June 5th, 2011 will mark 30 years since the first reports of persons infected with HIV. Today, even with the incredible strides in medication, care and understanding, much remains to be done. From our special vantage at HUD, housing that is decent safe and affordable still too often remains an unachieved aspiration – and persons who are homeless or in unstable situations remain challenged in accessing HIV treatment and care. Our work and those of our partners allows for these individuals to have a stable base to call home and from which to access the care and treatment necessary to improve their quality of life. Our partnerships through Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS (HOPWA) and other housing programs have shown clear evidence that beneficiaries of housing assistance maintain healthier lives due to their participation available care. The HOPWA program is now in every state in the country as well Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands through our formula and competitive programs. HUD can take pride in the successes of community partnerships that have been built over the past 18 years that have become an integral part of the national response to this epidemic. This Federal agency is most grateful to our partners who have used our housing resources to provide this care and evidence commitment at the frontlines of the battle with HIV.
In this 30th year, providers of HIV housing and care can also look to moving forward in greater unity. This comes not only from a solid certain record in service delivery to those in need. It is also founded on our work together to develop a new guide, the National HIV AIDS Strategy (NHAS) for the United States. The NHAS calls on all including the greater housing community to continue to build successful public and private partnerships. New approaches involve cross agency and more integrative service delivery approaches that achieve results to complex challenges.
HUD is collaborating with other agencies to commemorate the 30 years of AIDS and we encourage you to visit AIDS.gov’s portal for more information on events and ways to be involved. To help honor the many years of service, HUD is also supporting an effort launched by our Federal partners at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. This CDC online community forum, will serve as an information and communication portal where voices can be shared on stories of perseverance and success. Members can share events, stories, photos, videos, and much more from the past 30 years.