September 26, 2008
ACTION ALERT: ASK YOUR CONGRESSPERSON TO CO-SPONSOR HOUSING RESOLUTION!
She may no longer be part of the presidential drama, but she gets the connection between AIDS and housing
In addition to fretting over a $700 billion dollar bailout, Representatives Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), Henry Waxman (D-CA), Joe Crowley (D-NY), Barbara Lee (D-CA) and Christopher Shays (R-CT), and Senator Hillary Clinton (D-NY) are planning to drop a concurrent resolution (Con.Res 102. Reps. N-House and H.Con.Res 427 Senate) establishing the critical role housing plays in the prevention of HIV and care of people living with the virus. The National AIDS Housing Coalition is named in the text of the resolution. This groundbreaking step is a direct result of AIDS housing advocates presenting a declaration identifying housing as an essential component of HIV prevention, treatment, and care to the International AIDS Society at the International AIDS Conference in August.
Congress members are trying to head back to their districts as soon as possible before the election, and we have a very short window of opportunity to get co-sponsors for the resolution. Advocates want Congress to pass it in time for World AIDS Day to maximize exposure for this important resolution.
Ask your senators and representatives join in co-sponsoring this amazing step toward housing people with HIV/AIDS! You can reach your member via the U.S. Capitol switchboard (202) 225- 3121. Ask to speak to the staffer who handles housing issues. The goal is to have the House consider the resolution before World AIDS Day on December 1, so it is critical that we get broad congressional support right away. If you don't know who your representative is click here.
Click here to see the House "Dear Colleague" letter. The Senate resolution is below. The language of the House resolution is identical to the Senate.
CONCURRENT RESOLUTION H.Con.Res 427, S.Con.Res 102
Expressing the sense of Congress that ensuring the availability of adequate housing is an essential component of an effective strategy for the prevention and treatment of HIV and the care of individuals with HIV.
Whereas adequate and secure housing is recognized as a human right in Article 25 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations on December 10, 1948;
Whereas, strong and consistent research findings show that the socioeconomic status of individuals and groups is a key determinant of health;
Whereas, the link between poverty and an increased risk of contracting HIV and other poor health outcomes is well established;
Whereas, research findings demonstrate that there is a direct relationship between inadequate housing and a greater risk of HIV infection, poor health outcomes, and early death;
Whereas, Whereas poor living conditions, including overcrowding and homelessness, undermine safety, privacy, and efforts to promote self-respect, human dignity, and responsible sexual behavior;
Whereas, according to the National AIDS Housing Coalition, individuals who are homeless or unstably housed are 2 to 6 times more likely to use hard drugs, share needles, or exchange sex than individuals with stable housing, as the lack of stable housing directly impacts the ability of individuals living in poverty to reduce HIV risk behaviors;
Whereas, despite the evidence indicating that adequate housing has a direct positive effect on the prevention and treatment of HIV and health outcomes, the lack of resources dedicated to providing adequate housing has been largely ignored in policy discussions at the international level; and
Whereas the United Nations, in the 2006 Political Declaration on HIV/AIDS, embraced the goal of universal access to comprehensive prevention programs and treatment, care, and support for individuals with HIV by 2010: Now, therefore, be it
Resolved by the Senate (the House of Representatives concurring), That it is the sense of Congress that ensuring the availability of adequate housing is an essential component of an effective strategy for the prevention and treatment of HIV and the care of individuals with HIV.