The Obama administration’s 2013 budget promises to “build a fair and stable economy for the LGBT community, while continuing to defend their rights.” Below are seven investments for reducing anti-gay bullying, hate crimes, and HIV/AIDS infections:
— 4 percent increase to strengthen anti-discrimination enforcement: The Budget also proposes an increase for the Community Relations Service in the Department of Justice to fight hate crimes and provides a $14 million, or 4 percent, increase over the 2012 enacted level for the Equal Opportunity Employment Commission (EEOC), which is responsible for enforcing Federal laws that make it illegal to discriminate against a job applicant or an employee.
— Funding boost to combat hate crimes: In addition to the protections on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity under the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act, the Budget also proposes an increase for the Community Relations Service to fight hate crime.
— $86 million to combat bullying: The Budget provides $86 million for grants to States and local educational agencies under the Department of Education’s Successful, Safe, and Healthy Students program to fund activities aimed at preventing and reducing substance use, violence, harassment or bullying, and promoting student mental, physical, and emotional health.
— Increases funding for HIV/AIDS research and prevention to $28.5 billion: The Budget prioritizes HIV/AIDS resources within high-burden communities and among high-risk groups, including gay and bisexual men, Black Americans, Latino Americans and substance users. Compared to 2012, the Budget increases domestic discretionary HIV/AIDS funding at HHS by $119 million and Veterans Affairs (VA) HIV/AIDS funding by $74 million. Overall, total U.S. Government-wide spending on HIV/AIDS increases from $27.7 billion in 2012 to approximately $28.5 billion in 2013.
— Expands the Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program by $75 million: The Budget includes an increase of $75 million for care and treatment through the Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program. The Budget includes $1 billion for AIDS drug assistance programs, an increase of $67 million above 2012 levels to expand access to life saving HIV-related medications for uninsured and underinsured people living with HIV/AIDS. Based on current projections, this increase in funding for ADAP, combined with sufficient state contributions, will eliminate ADAP waiting lists in 2013.
— $330 million for housing assistance for people with HIV/AIDS: The President’s Budget requests $330 million for HUD’s Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS (HOPWA) program, to address housing needs among people living with HIV/AIDS and their families.
— Support global AIDS prevention and treatment: The Budget fully funds the balance of the Administration’s historic three-year, $4 billion pledge to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria, in recognition of this multilateral partner’s key role in global health and its progress in instituting reform.