GLAA urges creation of DC Council Committee on Health
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GLAA urges creation of DC Council Committee on Health

Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance of Washington, DC
PO Box 75265
Washington, DC 20013
202-667-5139

December 3, 2002

The Honorable Linda Cropp
Chairman of the Council
1350 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20004

Dear Mrs. Cropp:

As you and your colleagues deliberate the Council's committee structure for the 2003-04 term, we are writing to urge the creation of a separate Committee on Health.

When the Department of Health was separated from the Department of Human Services a few years ago, the Council decided to keep both agencies under the purview of one Human Services committee. In retrospect, we think that was a mistake. Both agencies are large and complex, requiring a heavy dose of aggressive oversight from the Council. Such oversight on health-related concerns was too often lacking in the term now ending. In particular, we are distressed that no oversight hearing has been conducted for the HIV/AIDS Administration (HAA) in several years, despite our repeated calls for such hearings. Facilitated by this neglect, a number of problems continue to fester within HAA, compromising the District's ability to prevent and treat HIV/AIDS.

More broadly, the imminent threat to the entire health care system implemented to replace D.C. General further argues for a heavier focus by the Council on health issues in the next two years, a focus that virtually mandates the creation of a separate Health Committee.

Thank you for your consideration.

Sincerely,

Bob Summersgill
President

Cc: All Councilmembers


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