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Faith and Civil Society Leaders Hold Interfaith Service to Commemorate World AIDS Day

WASHINGTON, Nov. 28 /PRNewswire/ -- With new HIV infections outpacing the number of people newly put on treatment worldwide, faith and civil society leaders will gather this World AIDS Day to call for a global commitment to effective prevention, treatment and care. The service, which will take place on December 1st, in Washington, D.C., will be followed by a candlelight vigil.

Given the recent election, the world is hopeful that U.S. leadership will promote human rights and equality in U.S. HIV prevention efforts. This means designing policies and programs based on evidence rather than ideology.

During a pre-service media briefing on Tuesday, November 25th, faith and civil society leaders called on the U.S. government to address the prevention needs of marginalized communities and chart the course for a sustainable and cost-effective response to the global pandemic.

Stating that the realities of people's lives should drive U.S. HIV/AIDS policies and funding, Rev. William Sinkford, President of the Unitarian Universalist Association of Congregations, said that it's "clear that the approach to HIV/AIDS needs to be country and community specific. We have to address the full social and economic contexts in which real people live or the pandemic will continue to spread."

    WHAT:  World AIDS Day Interfaith Observance

    WHERE: Foundry United Methodist Church
           1500 16th Street, NW
           Washington, D.C. 20036

    WHEN:  December 1, 2008 from 6:00 p.m. to 7:30p.m.

    WHO:   Salma Abugidieri, Director, Peaceful Families Project
           Rev. Dr. Bernice Powell Jackson, North American President, World
           Council of Churches Interim Pastor, Beecher Memorial United Church
           of Christ Patricia Nalls, Founder & Executive Director, The Women's
           Collective Rev. William G. Sinkford, President, Unitarian
           Universalist Association of Congregations Rabbi David Saperstein,
           Director, Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism

A written transcript of the pre-service media briefing can be found at:

Sponsored by: Advocates for Youth; American Jewish World Service; Center for Health and Gender Equity (CHANGE); General Board of Church & Society, United Methodist Church; International Women's Health Coalition; National Council of Jewish Women; Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice; Sexuality Information and Education Council of the United States (SIECUS); Union for Reform Judaism; Unitarian Universalist Association of Congregations; United Church of Christ (Justice and Witness Ministries)

SOURCE Center for Health and Gender Equity
Copyright©2008 PR Newswire.
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