NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — New York Mayor Bill de Blasio and members of the City Council want to allocate an extra $23 million a year for AIDS prevention and healthcare programs.
De Blasio, Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, and the New York City Council announced the plan on World AIDS Day — celebrated on Dec. 1.
The $23 million plan will create of new health care programs that will provide services nearly 200,000 people a year, according to a statement released by the de Blasio administration. The program will also expand housing, nutrition and transportation service to accommodate 7,300 new clients.
The plan draws from recommendations from the NYC End the Epidemic Taskforce, which works to develop new strategies to combat HIV/AIDS using medical, biomedical and social service tactics.
“It’s time to end the AIDS epidemic once and for all,” de Blasio said in a release.
In 2014, about 2,700 New York City residents were newly diagnosed with HIV, a historical low. That’s a 35 percent decrease from more than 4,100 new HIV diagnoses in 2004. According to the de Blasio administration, about 80 percent of the state’s HIV/AIDS cases are in New York City.
Governor Cuomo was presented with the ‘World AIDS Day Leadership Award at the Apollo Theater on Tuesday morning, commending his efforts to dramatically cut down AIDS cases in the state by 2020.
On Monday, Cuomo announced that New York State would dedicate an additional $200 million to a state-wide program fighting HIV and AIDS. The new funding will expand housing assistance for people with HIV and enhance services at “one-stop” STD clinics in the city.
Cuomo said that New York would lead the way to ending AIDS, and called on the federal government to contribute to the cause.
“I’ve watched all the debates — the Democratic debates, the Republican debates — there’s a debate every day,” Cuomo said. “I have not heard a question to any of the candidates on HIV and AIDS — and that is just wrong.”
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