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

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.


Bob Summersgill

Cc: All Councilmembers

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