Saturday, October 11, 2008

Updated: Nancy Lee Grahn's 10/1 'On My Porch' chat

Video from Nancy Lee Grahn's 'On My Porch' chat

Soap Stars speak to Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky about presidential election from rhoades rader on Vimeo
credit to and Kimberly McCullough and her associates for the video

Credit to for photos

Nancy Lee Grahn and her special guests from 'Daytime for Obama' - Jane Elliott, Mary Beth Evans, Kimberly McCollough, and Heather Thom gathered at her house to discuss the upcoming election, with a particular focus on issues critical to the well-being of women and children in our country. They were joined by Representative Jan Schakowsky (D-IL) via teleconference for this in-depth conversation.

Chat Transcripts:
Part I - Crisis on Wall Street
Part II - Women's Issues
Part III - Women, Children, Veterans and Health Issues
Part IV - An Emotional, Important Time

Kimberly also answered a pre-submitted question for the chat, just click

Recently, the CDC released startling statistics that the rate of HIV infection in the US was 40% higher than previously estimated. Infection rates haven't fallen in more than a decade and it's clear we aren't preventing a preventable disease. More than 1 million live with the virus, an estimated 25% do not know they have the virus, 34% of all infections occur in people younger than 30, women comprise 27% of the epidemic, 53% of new infections in '06 were men who have sex with men, and African Americans represent almost half of all infections. It's clear that the government is taking measures to address the AIDS crisis globally with George W. Bush’s President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) that has a $48 billion price tag. PEPFAR requires countries to submit their national AIDS strategies... and yet the US itself does not have one. There is no coordinated strategy between the 30 HIV/AIDS programs in 6 different departments of government with more than 20 agencies focused on HIV and AIDS. Thankfully, there seems to be a turning point...on July 17, 2008, the Senate Appropriations Committee approved a $1.4 million budget to develop a National AIDS Strategy within the White House Office of National AIDS Policy.

How important do you feel it is for the next President to make a National AIDS strategy a priority, what AIDS policy initiatives do you feel are important, and which candidate do you feel would lead the better fight against AIDS?

Thanks in advance for sharing your views!

Best regards,


Kimberly McCullough's answer:

Clearly the thing that troubles me the most is that both McCain and Palin believe that there should be abstinence only education. This means that education of young men and woman about STDS including HIV and AIDS in schools would be thrown out the window.

In 2004, HIV was the leading cause of death in the United States for Africa-American women. Women ages 25-34 are especially at risk.

Barack is involved with promoting microbicides, which is a medicine that can be applied topically without the consent of the sexual partner. This is particularly important in areas where there's mass violence against women as in Darfur. Women who are raped will be able to protect themselves that they wouldn't contract HIV. And even though they would have to deal with the physical and emotional trauma of being raped, they would have the power to protect their health.

Because Barack wants to empower women not only at home and globally, I believe Obama would be the best champion in the fights against AIDs.

(link to question/answer)


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