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Obama's 100 Days of Silence on AIDS Challenged in AHF TV Ad

60-Sec. Ad Compares Him to Former Presidents Reagan, Bush, Clinton and Bush and States: "President Obama: We Hope You are the Change We Can Believe in on AIDS"

 

WASHINGTON, Apr 26, 2009 - Over 1 Million People Have Visited the Campaign Website, More Than 1,000 e-Letters Have Been Sent to President Obama

AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF), will host a press teleconference on Monday, April 27th at 11:00 A.M. Eastern Time, to unveil a television and internet ad challenging President Obama's silence on AIDS during his first 100 days in office. The 60-second ad contains a brief history of the first 28 years of the epidemic highlighting responses to HIV/AIDS in the U.S. and globally by Presidents Reagan, Bush the 41st, Clinton and Bush the 43rd. The provocative piece ends with a challenge and plea to President Obama to be "the change we can believe in on AIDS." Distribution includes select cable outlets in Washington D.C. and New York, as well as on the internet. The ad can be viewed at: http://ga1.org/campaign/ahf_obamaonaids. Since the ad's release, the "Obama 100 Days of Silence on AIDS" campaign website has been visited by more than 1 million viewers. More than 1,000 people have sent e-letters to President Obama urging him to take action on AIDS.

"Though President Obama has been in office for 100 days, the country has yet to hear him speak a single word on AIDS," said Michael Weinstein. "By highlighting the history of presidential action and inaction on AIDS during the epidemic's twenty-eight years, we hope to remind the President that history will judge his leadership on the issue just as it has those who came before him. Despite his silence, we remain hopeful that President Obama will be the change that we can believe in--and urgently need- on AIDS."

WHAT:         Press Teleconference
                    Obama @ 100 Days--AHF launches TV, internet ad urging                     action on AIDS

WHEN:          MONDAY, April 27th 2009
                    11:00 AM Eastern (1100)
                     8:00 AM Pacific (0800)

HOW:           Teleconference Dial in information
USA:             +1.877.411.9748 participant code #7931503
INT'L:            +1.636.651.3128 participant code #7931503

WHO:           Michael Weinstein, AIDS Healthcare Foundation President                     Tom Myers, AIDS Healthcare Foundation Chief of Public                     Affairs & General Counsel

CONTACTS: Lori Yeghiayan, AHF Associate Director of                     Communications
                    (323) 377.4312 cell (323) 860-5227 office
                    Ged Kenslea, AHF Director of Communications
                    (323) 791-5526 cell (323) 860-5225 office

Earlier this month AHF, the largest non-profit HIV/AIDS organization in the U.S. which currently provides medical care and services to more than 100,000 individuals in 21 countries worldwide in the U.S., Africa, Latin America/Caribbean and Asia, expressed its deep disappointment regarding the administration's first--and so far, only--action on the issue: a proposal to spend $45 million over five years on a national communications campaign. At the time of the initiative's announcement Weinstein noted: "There are approximately 1.2 million people in the U.S. living with HIV/AIDS today. Nearly 300,000 of these individuals are unaware of their HIV-positive status. A $45 million dollar communications plan--no matter how well intended--will do little to help identify the estimated 300,000 infected individuals in the U.S. who may unknowingly be infecting others."

In addition to expressing disappointment, AHF renewed its call to President Obama, HHS and the CDC to appropriate $200 million to test ten million people in the U.S. for HIV over the next three years.

Full Text of AHF's President Obama 100-Days of Silence on AIDS Ad:

Voiceover: "President Obama promised change..." Image: Inaugural photo of President Obama with "100 Days..." superimposed over photo

Voiceover: "1981--Ronald Reagan becomes president. Six months later, the first AIDS cases are reported." Image: Inaugural photo of President Reagan

Voiceover: "Six years later--Reagan utters the word AIDS for the first time." Image: Photo of the AIDS Quilt on the Washington Mall with the text "3.4 million infected globally; 300,000 AIDS deaths."

Voiceover: "1990--Under George H.W. Bush, the AIDS funding bill called the Ryan White CARE Act becomes law." Image: Photo of President George H.W. Bush with the text "16 million infected globally; 800,000 AIDS deaths."

Voiceover: "President Clinton completes two terms in office without any major AIDS initiative. Daughter Chelsea grades his presidential AIDS effort a 'C'" Image: Photo of President Clinton and daughter Chelsea with the text "global AIDS deaths more than double to 22 million."

Voiceover: "2003--President George W. Bush unveils his lifesaving global AIDS treatment plan..." Image: Photo of President George W. Bush with "PEPFAR" logo

Voiceover: "...but 'abstinence-only' cripples HIV prevention." Image: Photo of a patient at an AHF HIV/AIDS treatment clinic in Uganda

Voiceover: "2009--33 million infected; More than 25 million dead." Image: Text on black screen "2009--33 million infected; More than 26 million dead."

Voiceover: "President Obama: We hope you are the change we can believe in on AIDS." Image: Photo of President Obama with the text "We hope you are the change we can believe in on AIDS."

About AHF

AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) is the US' largest non-profit HIV/AIDS healthcare provider. AHF currently provides medical care and/or services to more than 80,000 individuals in 22 countries worldwide in the US, Africa, Latin America/Caribbean and Asia. Additional information is available at www.aidshealth.org

SOURCE: :AIDS Healthcare Foundation :


AIDS Healthcare Foundation
UNITED STATES
Ged Kenslea,
Communications Director, AHF
(323) 860-5225 work,
(323) 791-5526 mobile
gedk@aidshealth.org
or
Lori Yeghiayan,
Associate Director of Communications, AHF
(323) 860-5227 work,
(323) 377-4312 mobile
lori.yeghiayan@aidshealth.org


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