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Trump fires entire Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS

Trump fires entire Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS

"On December 27, 2017, the current members of Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS (PACHA) received a letter informing them that the Administration was terminating their appointments", Hayes said in a statement. "The Trump Administration has no strategy to address the ongoing HIV/AIDS epidemic, seeks zero input from experts to formulate HIV policy, and - most concerning - pushes legislation that will harm people living with HIV and halt or reverse important gains made in the fight against this disease", he wrote in the column.

All 16 remaining members of the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS were fired earlier this week.

Schoettes said in Newsweek that much of the public is unaware that "only about 40 percent of people living with HIV in the United States are able to access the life-saving medications that have been available for more than 20 years". Fangerous that #Trump and Co. He took to Twitter to lambaste the president's decision, accusing it of being part of a strategy to bring back "abstinence-only" sex education, among other "harmful policies".

During the 2016 campaign, Trump called himself a "real friend" of the LGBT community.

Members of the council said they weren't given a reason for their removal, but acknowledge the fact many of them were Obama-Era appointees, and that administrations often want to appoint their own people. Councilmember Gabriel Maldonado told Newsweek the Trump HIV Council firing may have come purely from the president's desire to clear the Council of its remaining Obama appointees. "It is common for appointees to be terminated and for folks to kind of want their own people in", he told the paper. The Blade reported in October gay Republicans familiar with HIV/AIDS issues and LGBT issues have been among those contacted by a Trump administration official for possible appointments to PACHA.

Kaye Hayes, executive director of PACHA, affirmed the council members were terminated on Wednesday, but said there's more to the story.




'All PACHA members are eligible to apply to serve on the new council that will be convened in 2018'.

A notice on the Federal Register says the Department of Health and Human Services is seeking nominations for new council members.

"Remaining #HIV/AIDS council members booted by @realDonaldTrump".

Scott Schoettes, a senior attorney for Lambda Legal who resigned from the council in June, considers the firings "dangerous".

In June, six members of PACHA resigned in protest of what they felt was the Trump administration's inadequate response to treating Americans with HIV and AIDS.

Now, with the opioid epidemic continuing to rage, the number of those diagnosed with HIV and fighting AIDS may continue to surge, and it looks like there is no effective, concerted governmental effort to stem the tide. The Republican-controlled Congress has thus far continued to fund these programs at previous levels.

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