The federal appropriation process directly impacts communities here in Illinois, including communities of color and people living with or vulnerable to HIV. The $1 billion in cuts to HIV/AIDS and related programs in President Trump’s FY2018 Budget is a direct attack on moderate to low income families and individuals. Now is not the time to cut HIV/AIDS programs. Reductions in funding for these critical programs will result in more infections, increased lifetime medical costs, and ultimately more deaths from preventable and treatable diseases.
Fortunately, the President’s budget recommendations are only the start of the process. Congress makes the final decision on funding for the government. Congress will soon consider and take action on a budget to fund the federal government, including vital HIV/AIDS and related programs. Make sure they do the right thing! Contact your Members of Congress and tell them to save funding that strengthens services for HIV prevention and care.
In July, the Illinois General Assembly passed bipartisan legislation for a full Fiscal Year (FY) 18 budget that supports health equity across the state. Legislators also passed a revenue bill (which increases the Illinois income tax from 3.75% to 4.95%) to actually fund that budget. The AIDS Foundation of Chicago (AFC) supports the much-needed, permanent revenue to stop the cuts, repair the damage that has already been done, and make smart investments in our state’s future.