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Congresswoman Waters Commemorates World AIDS Day

December 1, 2015
Press Release


WASHINGTON, D.C. Congresswoman Maxine Waters (CA-43), Ranking Member of the Committee on Financial Services, issued the following statement in recognition of World AIDS Day:



“World AIDS Day is an important day for the global community to unite in the fight against HIV/AIDS.  This day gives us the opportunity to offer support and resources to people living with HIV/AIDS and to honor those who have lost their lives while battling the disease.” 


“According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), about 13,712 people who were diagnosed with AIDS died in 2012.  To date, an estimated 658,507 people diagnosed with AIDS in the United States have died. According to the World Health Organization, an estimated 39 million people have died worldwide since the first cases were reported in 1981 and 1.5 million people died of AIDS-related causes in 2013.”


“I have always been a strong supporter of HIV/AIDS awareness, prevention, research, and treatment in the United States Congress.   I circulated a letter last year to the President requesting robust funding for domestic HIV/AIDS programs in his fiscal year 2016 budget request.  I have also fought to expand routine HIV testing to enable all Americans to learn their status and begin medical treatment to prolong their lives and maintain their health and productivity.”


“I have also introduced legislation to increase funding for minority communities that are disproportionately affected by the disease.  In 1998, I led the establishment of the Minority AIDS Initiative, which provides grants to community-based organizations for HIV/AIDS treatment and prevention programs serving minority communities. Every year, I circulate letters to leaders of the House Appropriations Committee in support of funding for the Minority AIDS Initiative, and dozens of my colleagues sign these letters.  Because of our efforts, the Minority AIDS Initiative received $425 million in fiscal year 2015, despite the prevailing atmosphere of fiscal austerity.” 


“While our efforts have been aggressive in the battle against HIV/AIDS, we still have a long road ahead in combatting this disease.  I remain committed and dedicated to saving lives by promoting HIV/AIDS education, research, early detection, prevention, and treatment in the United States and across the entire world.”