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AIDS Activists from Across the Country Converge on Oxford, Mississippi, to Call on McCain and Obama to Commit to National AIDS Strategy

OXFORD, Miss., Sept. 24 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- As Senators Barack Obama and John McCain arrive in Oxford, Mississippi for their first presidential debate, they will be greeted by AIDS activists from across the country demanding that the next president develop a National AIDS Strategy within his first 100 days in office.

On Friday, September 26, at 3 p.m. - just hours before the debate - AIDS activists will hold a demonstration and mock funeral at Oxford City Hall to call attention to the thousands of people who have died from HIV/AIDS while no National AIDS Strategy has been in place.

The activists traveled to Oxford through the month of September in eight automotive caravans from every part of the country and a 172-mile march from Jackson to Oxford. By the time they reached Oxford, the caravans and march, all part of the Stand Against AIDS, traveled 10,851 miles through 47 states. They arrived in Oxford on September 23 for four days of action (including a rally and town hall meeting), that will culminate with a mock funeral and demonstration Friday afternoon.

The U.S. requires that foreign countries which receive U.S. taxpayer dollars for fighting AIDS create strategic national plans, but the U.S. itself does not have one. A National AIDS Strategy would prioritize prevention, treatment and research to end AIDS. It would include clear goals and timetable for reporting progress, and it would involve people from all sectors (government, business, faith-based communities, people with HIV/AIDS, etc.). Sen. Obama has committed to a National AIDS Strategy but has not said how quickly he would begin developing it, while Sen. McCain has made no commitment.

What: Mock funeral and demonstration calling for a National AIDS


Who: People with AIDS, their loved ones and supporters from across

the country who are marching and caravanning to Oxford for the

presidential debate

When: Friday, September 26, 3 p.m.

Where: Oxford City Hall

For more information, contact Alice Leeds, Stand Against AIDS, 917-523-5029

SOURCE Stand Against AIDS
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