NASTAD Statement on President-Elect Joseph R. Biden Jr.

By Kyle Taylor November 9, 2020

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 9, 2020

CONTACT: Kyle Taylor
Director, Communications, NASTAD
ktaylor@NASTAD.org

NASTAD Statement on President-Elect Joseph R. Biden Jr.

WASHINGTON, D.C. –– On November 7, 2020 several media organizations declared that Joseph Biden and Kamala Harris won the election for the President and Vice President of the United States. Biden and Harris will take office on January 20, 2021.

“President-Elect Biden and Vice President-Elect Harris now have an opportunity to accelerate the work to end the HIV, hepatitis, STI, and opioid epidemics, focusing on addressing social determinants of health and repairing our broken systems,” said Stephen Lee, Executive Director of NASTAD. "While we have made some progress over the past four years, we have also seen an onslaught of policies counter to the goals to end the HIV and hepatitis epidemics, including policies that have directly harmed immigrants, women, people of color, indigenous communities, and the LGBTQ community. We are also in the midst of a growing COVID-19 and economic crisis, shining a spotlight on the need to invest in our nation’s public health infrastructure and our safety net systems and to center health equity and anti-racism in public policy.”

NASTAD and its members are prepared to work with the Biden transition team to ensure a plan is in place to continue momentum towards ending HIV and hepatitis in the United States. The Biden Administration will need to be prepared to immediately end several current policies that harm communities vulnerable to HIV and hepatitis. This includes reversing damaging Medicaid policies such as work requirements, restoring non-discrimination protections for trans and gender non-conforming individuals, and rescinding both the public charge rule that is denying immigrants access to public benefits and the executive order attacking racial justice trainings.

At the same time, the incoming Biden Administration must commit to building on our recent successes to end the HIV and hepatitis epidemics. The Ending the HIV Epidemic Initiative must be fully funded so we can achieve our goal of reducing new HIV infections by 90% by 2030. The United States should align with the World Health Organization’s ambitious goal to eliminate hepatitis by 2030. And the federal government must also address intersecting syndemics such as rising STI infections and the opioid epidemic.

“NASTAD eagerly looks forward to working hand-in-hand with President-Elect Biden’s Administration to enact our shared vision of a world free of HIV and hepatitis,” continued Dr. Lee. “We have our work cut out for us, but together I know we can end the HIV and hepatitis epidemics.”

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About NASTAD

Founded in 1992, NASTAD is a leading non-partisan non-profit association that represents public health officials who administer HIV and hepatitis programs in the U.S. and around the world. Our singular mission is to end the intersecting epidemics of HIV, viral hepatitis, and related conditions. We do this work by strengthening domestic and global governmental public health through advocacy, capacity building, and social justice.