“What World AIDS Day means to me” op-ed published in the CT Mirror

December 4, 2019

This past Sunday marked the 31st World AIDS Day. Much progress has been made since it began, but we must memorialize those we lost and the work of advocates over the decades. Our efforts need to focus on combating the spread of HIV/AIDS for the next generation.

Below, you can read the opening to an op-ed I wrote, which got picked up by the CT Mirror’s Viewpoints section. It’s a reflection piece that takes stock of the state of HIV/AIDS in Connecticut.

Click here or the link at the end of this post to read “What World AIDS Day means to me” in its entirety.

Thirty years ago, months of nationwide protests coordinated through the AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power (ACT UP) forced pharmaceutical giant Burroughs Wellcome to change course.

Burroughs Wellcome, the maker of AZT, an antiretroviral treatment for Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) patients, was preparing to sell the life-saving drug at a price so high that federal officials were threatening to step in. And so, under mounting pressure from protesters and public servants in the late summer of 1989, Burroughs Wellcome caved and lowered the cost. That battle over AZT pricing bears a great deal of resemblance to that of our current health care crisis — outspoken advocates, powerful pharmaceutical executives—a similarity which I find equally troubling and hopeful as I reflect on my first year in the General Assembly on this Worldwide AIDS Day… Click here to read the rest!