In a statement released Tuesday
recognizing World AIDS Day, President Joe Biden included LGBT people,
a reversal from the Trump era.
After rededicating the United States to
ending the HIV/AIDS epidemic, Biden acknowledged that the ongoing
COVID-19 pandemic presents difficult obstacles in the fight.
“Ending the HIV epidemic is within
our reach, and we are committed to finishing this work,” Biden
said. “On World AIDS Day, we rededicate ourselves to building on
the progress of the last 4 decades; upholding and advancing human
rights; supporting research, science, and data-driven solutions;
expanding access to housing, education, and economic empowerment; and
fighting stigma and discrimination. No one living with HIV should
suffer the undeserved guilt and prejudice that too many continue to
“The COVID-19 pandemic has added to
the challenges our heroic health care and frontline workers face, yet
they continue to deliver essential HIV prevention services and
provide vital care and treatment to people living with HIV,” Biden
said. “The pandemic has also interrupted HIV research and
highlighted the work that still remains to achieve equitable access
to HIV prevention, care, and treatment in every community –
particularly for communities of color, adolescent girls and young
women, and the LGBTQI+ community.”
During the Trump administration, the
White House consistently excluded LGBT people from the president's
World AIDS Day proclamations, a reversal from his predecessor,
President Barack Obama, who in his 2016 statement noted that “gay
and bisexual men, transgender people, youth, black and Latino
Americans, people living in the Southern United States, and people
who inject drugs are at a disproportionate risk” of contracting
HIV, the virus that causes AIDS.
While President Trump ignored the LGBT
community, his administration did launch an initiative that seeks to
end the HIV epidemic by 2030.
Biden vowed that his administration
“remains steadfast in our efforts to end the HIV epidemic.” He
said that the government's programs have saved more than 21 million
“This remarkable progress over the
past 18 years has been made possible through strong, bipartisan
United States leadership and American generosity,” Biden said.
Tuesday marked the 33rd
annual World AIDS Day.