U2 Lead signer, Nobel Peace Prize nominee and Time Magazine Person of the Year Bono seems aghast as Michael Kink, Housing Works, Legislative Council describes the HIV/AIDS Crisis in Puerto Rico during last nights protest in front of the Puerto Rico Federal Affairs annual Christmas Party. For months now the islands’ HIV/AIDS advocates have been calling out for US supporters to help in their efforts to bring some sensibility to the perpetual misuse, mismanagement and possible corruption of Federal HIV/AIDS designated funds by the San Juan EMA and the Puerto Rico Department of Health.
Bono seems intrigued by Michael as he details the situation outlined in the Puerto Rico HIV/AIDS crisis leaflet.
Supporters of the HIV/AIDS advocates in Puerto Rico traveled from Philadelphia and New York (and elsewhere) to protest in front of the annual Puerto Rico government sponsored party that draws many of Washington, DC’s elite. While inside, party revelers danced to salsa music and ate Caribbean delicacies outside the advocates poured out bottles of Bacardi Rum, a Puerto Rico based product, and called for a national boycott of Puerto Rico Rums.
The advocates campaigned for the US Federal Government to take action to gain responsible control of the HIV/AIDS dollars that are currently either being mismanaged or underutilized while so many patients are going without life sustaining services. According to numerous federal investigations, the island is among the top 10 jurisdiction that returns funds to the Federal government because it not manage them.
Both the San Juan EMA and the Puerto Rico Department of Health are under HRSA imposed restricted draw down, an administrative condition imposed by the Health Resources and Services Administration when grantees are not compliant. Little more however has been done to remedy the situation.
Yours in the struggle,
National Minority AIDS Council
Assistant Director, Government Relations and Public Policy
1624 U St, NW Suite 200
Washington, DC 20009-4432
Tel: 202-234-5120 ext. 303 Fax: 202-234-6404
email: email@example.com -or- firstname.lastname@example.org
“No war on the face of the Earth is more destructive than the AIDS pandemic. I was a soldier. But I know of no enemy in war more insidious or vicious than AIDS. Will history record a fateful moment in our time, on our watch, when action came too late?”
US Secretary of State Colin Powell
Address to the UN General Assembly Special Session on HIV/AIDS
June 25, 2001