Congressmen Jerrold Nadler, D-NY, and Joseph Crowley, D-NY, are pleased to announce that the House of Representatives has approved a $6 million increase in funding for Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS (HOPWA) in the omnibus spending bill for Fiscal Year 2004.
The increase was welcome news to Nadler, Crowley and a bipartisan group of members of the House, who fought to increase funding for HOPWA. Earlier this year, 77 members of Congress, including Crowley, signed on to Nadler's request for additional funding.
Nadler said, 'While HOPWA deserves much more funding than the $6 million increase provided by the Congress, any increase is good news. When I meet with members of the AIDS community, there is one need that is stressed above all others, and that is housing. Finding affordable housing can be extremely difficult as it is. Throw in the added complications of living with AIDS—paying for expensive medication, the difficulty in holding a steady job, and even facing discrimination—and it's nearly impossible. That's why HOPWA fills such a critical void.'
HOPWA, a locally controlled program that helps communities address local housing needs for persons living with AIDS, served over 60,000 people in 74 cities in 2002. The program provides communities with the flexibility to address local housing needs and supplies a low-cost alternative to acute-care hospital beds, typically paid for with Medicaid dollars, which are often the only available shelter for people living with AIDS.