I am requesting congressional support of the Global Fund Initiative of which PEPFAR, the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, is a component. This program is critical to prevention in regions of Africa, and diagnosis and treatment to those who are living with AIDS.
The daily lives of many Africans are already fragile due to economic and social conditions, as I witnessed while traveling there. One memorable experience was of a refugee camp outside of a metropolitan area where tens of thousands lived in small huts made of boxes and rusted corrugated metal, in filth and deep furrows of mud.
Any other health issue renders the people of Africa without any means of recovery, thereby, placing the entire region and world at risk. The added issue of AIDS is devastating,
I urge Sens. Mitch McConnell and Rand Paul and Rep. Andy Barr to ensure their continued support of the fund and other foreign-aid programs, which cost less than 1 percent of the 2017 federal budget.