I just sent message to State Representative and Chairman of the Illinois Legislative Black Caucus and I would like to ask each of you to contact your State Representative and State Senator on this urgent matter. I added at the bottom contact information to the legislature. This is urgent because the may vote on this today or tomorrow. If you think this doesn't effect you, it does because it may effect someone you know or someone close to you that you didn't know needed help.
I have just been made aware that your Republican Colleagues have proposed to attack the quality of life people living with HIV and AIDS and we need the Illinois Legislative Black Caucus to stop this.
What is proposed is for Medicaid to stop funding combination or what you may know as cocktail drug treatment for over 11,300 people living with HIV/AIDS. You are aware that at least 49% of these people are African-American more commonly we know all of these people have financial limitation and the proposal would regulate the most needy to sub-standard care.
The Republicans are saying that combination drugs are a luxury and cost saving. It is not a luxury. The combination together is a better treatment not because it cost more, but because it enhances the quality of life. Further, they come to there conclusions with no medical support, but speculation on the lives of people they don't know and don't care about. It never fails to catch my attention that the very same people that talk about the Right to Life are the very same ones that consistently fall short of human compassion for those living on earth. Several years ago here in Chicago speaking before the American Medical Association (AMA) Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. said the measure of the a society's humanity is how the provide medical care.
This proposed treatment is prescription of hostility toward poor people and it is wrong on so many levels. I am calling upon the Black Caucus to speak loudly with conviction that you value ever life.This action is a part of national strategy if they win it here in treating people bad they will carry this effort all over the country. I won't even go into the arguments against the effects of budget cuts you know it better then I, but this is about people's lives. As I have told you before I still go to funerals for Black people that are dying of complications of HIV. We haven't had the greatest of success in turning around this in our communities and partly because the barriers to treatment. This attack on medication is a combination of the its own of thinly veiled classism and racism.
Governor Quinn has backed down from his proposal to restrict access to HIV medications for people on Medicaid living with HIV. There can not be talk of limiting the number of drugs for inferior drug treatment.
These proposals will have dangerous unintended consequences for HIV/AIDS patients, their families, healthcare providers, the public health and the state. If enacted, they risk reversing decades of progress in the fight against HIV/AIDS, and will put in jeopardy the U.S. government’s stated goal of achieving an “AIDS-free generation.”
Governor Pat Quinn
Representative Michael J. Madigan
Speaker of the House
Representative Sara Feigenholtz
Chair, Human Services Appropriations
Representative Greg Harris
Chair, Human Services Committee
Senator John J. Cullerton
President of the Senate
Senator 6th District
Senator Heather Steans
Vice Chair, Human Services
Representative Monique D. Davis
Representative William Davis
Representative Kimberly du Buclet
Representative Marlow Colvin
Representative Monique Davis
Representative Kenneth Dunkin
Representative Marcus C. Evans, Jr.
Representative Mary E. Flowers
Representative La Shawn K. Ford
Representative Esther Golar
Representative Jehan Gordon
Representative Constance A. Howard
Representative Eddie Lee Jackson, Sr.
Representative Charles E. Jefferson
Representative Thaddeus Jones
Representative Camille Y. Lilly
Representative Rita Mayfield
Representative Al Riley
Representative Derrick Smith
Representative André M. Thapedi
Representative Arthur Turner
Representative Karen A. Yarbrough
Senator James F. Clayborne, Jr.
Senator 57th District
Senator Annazette R. Collins
Senator 5th District
Senator Jacqueline Y. Collins
Senator 16th District
Senator Mattie Hunter
Senator 3rd District
Senator Toi W. Hutchinson
Senator 40th District
Senator Emil Jones, III
Senator 14th District
Senator Kimberly A. Lightford
Senator 4th District
Assistant Majority Leader
Senator James T. Meeks
Senator 15th District
Senator Kwame Raoul
Senator 13th District
Senator Donne E. Trotter
Senator 17th District
Majority Caucus Chair
Eddie Lee Jackson is a Democratic member of the Illinois House of Representatives, representing the 114th District since his appointment on January 9, 2009 to replace Wyvetter H. Younge. The district includes Alorton, Belleville, Brooklyn, Cahokia, Centreville, East St. Louis, Fairview Heights, Mascoutah, Millstadt, O'Fallon, Sauget, Scott Air Force Base, Shiloh, Swansea and Washington Park.