Sheraton Hotel at 52nd Street
and 7th Avenue.
March 26, 1999
By slashing the NYS AIDS budget in housing, prevention, treatment, and
services and diverting that money to fund the punitive HIV Criminalization
and Partner Notification Laws, Pataki has turned his back on New Yorkers
infected with HIV and AIDS.
Pataki was ZAPPED while speaking at a power
breakfast lauding his life
while threatening budget cuts as fiscal prudence.
TELL PATAKI TO FULLY RESTORE AND INCREASE ALL
FUNDING FOR HOUSING FOR
PEOPLE LIVING WITH HIV/AIDS, REAL HIV PREVENTION THAT WORK, PROGRAMS AND
SERVICES THAT WILL KEEP PEOPLE LIVING LONGER AND EVEN SAVE NEW YORKERS
MONEY IN THE LONG RUN.
NEW YORKERS LIVING WITH HIV AND AIDS DEMAND
ATTENTION EVEN IF HIS FOCUS IS
ON THE PRESIDENCY AND WE REFUSE TO ALLOW HIM TO CUT THESE FUNDS AND ENDORSE
BAD AIDS LAWS.
This protest is part of the 40 day campaign
to ensure decent and effective govenment regulations and
restore the money for AIDS that New Yorkers have lost.
AIDS Activists Take Over Health
April 28, 1999
A half dozen activists, in protest of New York's new HIV reporting and partner notification law, took over on Wednesday the office of a top state AIDS official until late afternoon. The activists issued a list of six demands, which were also distributed to the media. They asked legislature to rescind the notification law, which has not yet gone into effect, and extend a 45-day comment period on the proposed legislation. The new law requires doctors to report cases of HIV infection to state officials and inform sexual partners if the patients refuse to do so themselves.
7 ACTIVISTS TAKE OVER DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH COMMISH' OFFICE TO DEMAND REPEAL OF PARTNER NOTIFICATION LEGISLATION
Albany, NY- Five days before the end of the
public comment period on the newly passed partner notification
legislation, 7 activists took over Acting Commissioner of the
New York State Department of Health, Dennis Whalen's
office. The group's demands included an immediate request from the Department of Health (DOH) to the State Legislature for the immediate repeal of legislation requiring partner notification, the names reporting and an extension of the public comment period including hearings where the community can give input into the specific regulations.
The activists refused to leave his office until the New York State Department of Health not only publicly stated its opposition to partner notification, but also renewed its commitment to REAL AIDS prevention including needle exchange and safer sex education in public schools.
"It was important for AIDS activists to not let this law and public comment period pass without some way of expressing our outrage" said, Eunice Scott of Fed Up Queers. The Department of Health refused to provide any public hearings despite the formal request by several large AIDS service organizations and AIDS advocates.
According to Mel Stevens of ACT UP, "The extension of the public comment period is necessary because the specific protocols for those populations that this legislation will affect most dramatically were either not released at all, or just released two weeks ago." Among the list of 6 demands is a call for a comprehensive plan for how the DOH will notify partners of people under 24 years old and those who have been a victim of domestic violence. This joint action was planned by members of ACT UP and Fed Up Queers, 2 groups committed to direct action from New York City.
"The regulations that the DOH have released would include a person's name to be reported several times during the course of his/her treatment. We strongly oppose the registry of a persons HIV status and the way this protocol is written there will be multiple opportunities for a breach of confidentiality.", said Kenneth Corbin. Members of the group stated that there is already enough information on the status of the epidemic. According to Emilia Levy, "What we need is a commitment to those things that we know works like needle exchange and safer sex education, not a collection of names and an expensive program that strips funding from necessary supportive services for people with AIDS".
1. THE NEW YORK STATE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH MUST IMMEDIATELY EXTEND THE
45-DAY PUBLIC COMMENT PERIOD ON PARTNER NOTIFICATION REGULATIONS TO A
MINIMUM OF AN ADDITIONAL 45 DAYS. THERE SHOULD BE PUBLIC HEARINGS
ORGANIZED THROUGHOUT THE STATE WITH CONSULTATION FROM COMMUNITY BASED
ORGANIZATIONS, ADVOCATES AND ACTIVISTS AFFECTED BY HIV/AIDS.
2. THE NEW YORK STATE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH MUST IMMEDIATELY CONVENE A
COMMITTEE OF COMMUNITY BASED ORGANIZATIONS, ADVOCATES AND ACTIVISTS WITH A
HISTORY OF PROVIDING SERVICES TO, AND IN-DEPTH KNOWLEDGE OF, YOUTH AGES
11-24 IN ORDER TO DEVELOP A PROTOCOL THAT WILL ADDRESS THE VERY SPECIFIC
CONCERNS OF CONTACT TRACING AND NAMES REPORTING THAT FACE THAT POPULATIONA
AND THIS PROTOCOL SHOULD BE WRITTEN DIRECTLY INTO THE REGULATIONS.
3. THE NEW YORK STATE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH MUST IMMEDIATELY CONVENE
AND A COMMITTEE CONSISTING OF COMMUNITY BASED ORGANIZATIONS, ADVOCATES AND
ACTIVISTS WITH A HISTORY OF PROVIDING SERVICES TO, AND IN-DEPTH KNOWLEDGE
OF, VICTIMS OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE, TO REVIEW AND REVISE THE RECENTLY
RELEASED DOMESTIC VIOLENCE PROTOCOL THAT WILL AFFECT THE VERY SPECIFIC
CONCERNS OF CONTACT TRACING AND NAMES REPORTING THAT ADDRESS THAT
POPULATION AND THIS PROTOCOL SHOULD BE WRITTEN DIRECTLY INTO THE
4. THE NEW YORK STATE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH MUST BE COMMITTED TO FULLY
FUNDING ONLY THOSE PROGRAMS THAT CONSTITUTE AIDS PREVENTION SUCH AS NEEDLE
EXCHANGE, TREATMENT ADHERENCE, HOUSING FOR HOMELESS PEOPLE LIVING WITH
HIV/AIDS, PERMANCY PLANNING PROGRAMS AND SAFER SEX EDUCATION IN SCHOOLS
BEFORE ANY FUNDING FOR PARTNER NOTIFICATION OR ANY OTHER INNIATIVE.
5. THE NEW YORK STATE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH MUST IMMEDIATELY END THE
CRIMINALIZATION OF POSESSION OF SYRINGES AND PROVIDE SAFER SEX EDUCATION IN
ALL NEW YORK STATE PUBLIC SCHOOLS.
6. THE NEW YORK STATE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH MUST IMMEDIATELY MAKE A
MOTION TO REPEAL PARTNER NOTIFICATION LEGISLATION TO THE NEW YORK STATE
LEGISLATURE AND RENEW ITS COMMITMENT TO REAL AIDS PREVENTION AND PUBLIC
The ad-hoc Committee to STOP PATAKI'S AIDS POLICE