Trump Dismisses Last of Presidential HIV/AIDS Advisory Council

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In what activists see as another sign of his indifference to the AIDS epidemic, Donald Trump has fired the remaining 16 members of the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS "without explanation via a letter from FedEx", the Washington Blade reports.

"The current members of Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS (PACHA) received a letter informing them that the administration was terminating their appointments", Hayes said.

But while President Barack Obama had terminated all Bush appointees to the council, this situation is different, said Maldonado, who was appointed by Obama and was to serve into next year. "I wasn't supposed to leave until 2018".

Six members of the council resigned in June due to "a president who simply does not care", according to one member in a Newsweek op-ed entitled "Trump doesn't care about HIV". Medications have advanced since then, making HIV a much more manageable diagnosis for many Americans.

"From ending protections against bullying for trans youth in our schools to his attempt to ban the transgender community from the military to no mention of Gay Pride month during June to leaving out the LGBT community on World AIDS Day to banning words such as transgender, diversity and other, this president has been nothing but a complete train wreck that is a danger to the safety and lives of all Americans", Kilmnick continued.

Scott Schoettes, a lawyer with Lambda Legal, a LGBT rights organization, was one of them. Fangerous that #Trump and Co.

'And a lot of those key vulnerable populations are not being prioritized in this administration'.

She added that the members were thanked for their "leadership, dedication and commitment".

Sources told the Washington Blade that members were likely fired to clear out Obama appointees even though their appointments had not yet expired. "Changing the makeup of federal advisory committee members is a common occurrence during Administration changes".

Although it is normal for a new administration to dismiss council members appointed by the previous administration before appointing their own, though Maldonado questioned the "unorthodox" timing of the decision.

Schoettes went on to say that Trump was "executing a purge" by many of his actions, including those unrelated to HIV.

'Many of us, our terms were over earlier this year and we were sworn back in, ' Maldonado revealed.

But Maldonado said it doesn't explain why the administration waited a year to fire the Obama-era holdovers. An estimated 1.2 million people have HIV/AIDS in the United States and 37 million have the disease worldwide.

The council is made up of doctors, members of industry, members of the community and people living with the disease.

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