Harvard Students Protest Scott Brown Over Proposed Cuts To AIDS Funding

Members of the Harvard Global Health and AIDS Coalition convened outside of Republican Senator Scott Brown’s Office Monday, urging the Senator to back an initiative to block proposed funding cuts to the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), a program that provides funding for HIV/AIDS prevention and relief. At least a dozen protesters urged Brown to sign a “Dear Colleague” letter, encouraging fellow senators to support the initiative to preserve PEPFAR funding, which faces cuts totaling nearly $562.9 million. PEPFAR is part of the President’s Global Health Initiative, which pledged $15 billion to fight HIV/AIDS around the world over five years. “The proposed cuts would be the first in the program’s relatively brief history and would break Obama’s campaign promise to increase funding for the initiative during his presidency.” — Fatima Najiy