December 1, 2022
CONTACT: Mariah McGough, firstname.lastname@example.org
ON WORLD AIDS DAY, NEW YORKERS DEMAND GOV. HOCHUL KEEP PROMISES TO LGBTQ COMMUNITY AND INVEST IN HOUSING FOR PEOPLE LIVING WITH HIV
NEW YORK — Today, on World AIDS Day, leaders with VOCAL-NY’s Positive Leaders Union called on Governor Hochul to make good on promises in her World AIDS Day Proclamation by investing in statewide rental assistance for people living with HIV/AIDS across the state — not just in NYC. Advocates gathered to call on Governor Kathy Hochul, the NYS legislature, and all leaders of NYS to prioritize funding for permanent, supportive housing for people living with HIV across the state of New York.
“We lived through the darkest days of the HIV/AIDS epidemic and on this World AIDS Day, we remember all those whom we have lost to HIV/AIDS,” said Assemblymember Bronson. “Now in 2022, as we push forward onto progress in ending the HIV/AIDS epidemic, we stand ready to fight for legislation to help people infected with HIV meet basic needs including safe affordable housing, food, and transportation. We cannot end this epidemic while 10,000 or more individuals with HIV across the state remain homeless or are unstably housed. Housing is healthcare and I will not stop fighting until we meet this need.”
“Speaking from my experience living in a shelter, l was being targeted because of my kindness and it was not safe for me,” said Susan D., a leader with VOCAL-NY’s Positive Leaders Union based in New York City. “After talking to VOCAL-NY, I was given the opportunity to speak with HASA Directors from my heart. In New York City, I have the right to supportive housing, and all people should have that same right to safe, permanent housing.”
“Housing equals healthcare! We need housing NOW,” said Alex Hardman, a leader with VOCAL-NY’s Westchester Chapter. “As an HIV positive person living with no income, I deserve the same rights, access to housing, and resources as someone just like me living in the five boroughs. My zip code should not be a death sentence!”
Last year, Governor Hochul made a proclamation to support healthcare for people living with HIV/AIDS in New York, but she didn’t commit a single dime in her budget to housing for those living with the virus. Now, with her set to begin a new term, it’s time she put her money where her mouth is. After failing to fund housing that will give HIV+ folks a safe place to receive treatment, we demand that Governor Hochul commit to it this year in her State of the State and Executive Budget.