SAVE ADAP Action AlertFrom: "Ryan Clary"
AIDS Treatment Activists Coalition SAVE ADAP Alert
Be a part of the SAVE ADAP Summer Campaign Kickoff the week of June 14th Call Your House Representative and Ask for Full Funding for ADAP Update on Senate "Dear Colleague" Letter-Signatures Still Needed!
June 9, 2004
SAVE ADAP is kicking off a summer grassroots action campaign on June 14th-18th with a "Call Congress Week". The House of Representatives is expected to start its process for deciding Fiscal Year 2005 funding levels for the AIDS Drug Assistance Program and other important HIV/AIDS services in the next few weeks.
According to the National Alliance of State and Territorial AIDS Directors (NASTAD), as of June 7th there are 1,629 people on ADAP waiting lists in eleven states. Experts have determined that a $217 million increase is needed for Fiscal Year 2005 to help alleviate the ADAP crisis.
You can make a difference by joining advocates around the country for this important SAVE ADAP "Call Congress Week"!
How you can help:
1. During the week of June 14th, call the Washington, DC office of your U.S. House Representative. A toll-free number is listed below. Ask to speak to the legislative aide who handles HIV and health care issues. Whether you speak to this person live or leave a message, tell him/her:
"I am calling to urge Representative _______________ to support a $217 million increase for the AIDS Drug Assistance Program in the Fiscal Year 2005 appropriations bill. Right now there are over 1,600 people on waiting lists for lifesaving drugs and this increase would help alleviate the crisis. I would like Representative ___________ to convey this support to members of the House Appropriations Committee. I also support the highest funding for the entire Ryan White CARE Act."
You can reach your Representative by calling the Congressional switchboard toll-free at 1-800-839-5276. Ask to be connected to your Representative's office. You'll need to know who your Representative is in advance. If you don't know who represents you, go to www.vote-smart.org.
2. If you have time (and only after calling your OWN Representative), call the offices of Representatives Bill Young (R-FL) and David Obey (D-WI). They are the Chair and the Ranking Member of the House Appropriations Committee and are key decision-makers in funding for ADAP and other HIV/AIDS programs. Even if you are not a constituent, you can let them know about the ADAP crisis and that their leadership is needed.
You can reach Reps. Young and Obey through the toll-free Capitol Switchboard number given above. Tell whoever answers the phone in their office:
"I am calling to urge Representative Young/Obey to support a $217 million increase for the AIDS Drug Assistance Program. I have already called my own Representative, but want to make sure that the Representative is aware of this funding request given his leadership position in the Appropriations Committee. Right now there are over 1,600 people on waiting lists for lifesaving drugs and this increase would help alleviate the crisis. I also support the highest funding for the entire Ryan White CARE Act."
Update on Senate "Dear Colleague" Letter:
In April, four U.S. Senators sent out a very powerful bipartisan "Dear Colleague" letter in support of providing badly needed fiscal relief to the AIDS Drug Assistance Program (ADAP). The letter is co-authored by Senators Jeff Bingaman (D-NM), Richard Durbin (D-IL), Gordon Smith (R-OR), and Olympia Snowe (R-ME).
Not only does this letter ask for a $217 million increase for ADAP for the next fiscal year, but it also supports an immediate emergency supplemental increase of $122 million to help deal with the current ADAP crisis.
As of June 8th, 21 additional Senators have signed this letter (see list below).
Sign-ons are still being collected, as this letter could be used whenever an opportunity exists for an emergency supplemental appropriation. The more signatures on this letter (and the more bipartisan the list), the better chance that the Senate will consider emergency funding for ADAP.
Please take a minute to call your two U.S. Senators about this letter. If they have already signed on, thank them for their leadership. If they haven't signed, urge them to add their name. Be sure to talk about how ADAP affects you or people you care about. If there is an ADAP crisis in your state, let them know that you expect them to fight for adequate federal funding to help ensure that everyone has access to lifesaving treatment.
You can reach your U.S. Senators through the same toll-free number above.
Current Senate "SAVE ADAP" letter sign-ons (as of June 8th):
Jeff Bingaman (D-NM)
Richard Durbin (D-IL)
Gordon Smith (R-OR)
Olympia Snowe (R-ME)
Daniel Akaka (D-HI)
Barbara Boxer (D-CA)
Maria Cantwell (D-WA)
Jon Corzine (D-NJ)
Tom Daschle (D-SD)
Mark Dayton (D-MN)
James Jeffords (I-VT)
Tim Johnson (D-SD)
Ted Kennedy (D-MA)
John Kerry (D-MA)
Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ)
Carl Levin (D-MI)
Joseph Lieberman (D-CT)
Blanche Lincoln (D-AR)
Barbara Mikulski (D-MD)
Patty Murray (D-WA)
Mark Pryor (D-AR)
Paul Sarbanes (D-MD)
Charles Schumer (D-NY)
Debbie Stabenow (D-MI)
Ron Wyden (D-OR)
Thank you for taking the time to make your voice heard on this important issue!
The Save ADAP Committee is a Working Group of the AIDS Treatment Activists Coalition (ATAC), a national coalition of AIDS treatment activists and policy advocates. Working in conjunction with ADAP clients and service providers on the grassroots level, Save ADAP aims to ensure adequate funding for the AIDS Drug Assistance Program. For more information go to: