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AHF: Elimination of DACA Will Also Discourage At-Risk Youth from Seeking HIV & STD Testing and Treatment Services
[September 06, 2017]

AHF: Elimination of DACA Will Also Discourage At-Risk Youth from Seeking HIV & STD Testing and Treatment Services


AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF), the largest global AIDS organization, today warned that an unintended consequence of White House plans to end Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), an Obama-era program that allowed young undocumented immigrants to live, study and work in the country without fear of deportation, is that it will likely discourage at-risk youth-both in and outside of the DACA program-from seeking out and accessing critical HIV and STD prevention and testing services as well as STD treatment programs, when needed.

The administration's action to end DACA comes on the heels of a CDC report that revealed that rates of sexually transmitted diseases are dramatically increasing across the country-particularly among young people ages 15-24. At the time of the release of the CDC report in October 2016, NPR reported, "Over half of gonorrhea and chlamydia cases are in people under the age of 25," and that, "State and local budget cuts to STD care and prevention programs are major drivers in the surge in STDs," according to Dr. Jonathan Mermin, director of the National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD, and TB Prevention for the CDC.

"There is no question that STDs are at record rates in many places across the nation today. At a time when we should be working together to do everything we can to make HIV and STD prevention, testing and treatment services easily available, ending DACA will put a chill in the willingness of young people to seek out and access these services," added Michael Weinstein, president of AIDS Healthcare Foundation. "Regardless of what Congress ultimately does with DACA, we must continue to find new and more effective ways to reach vulnerable, at-risk populations with such crucial public health services."

About AIDS Healthcare Foundation


AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF), the largest global AIDS organization, currently provides medical care and/or services to more than 804,000 individuals in 38 countries worldwide in the US, Africa, Latin America/Caribbean, the Asia/Pacific Region and Eastern Europe. To learn more about AHF, please visit our website: www.aidshealth.org, find us on Facebook (News - Alert): www.facebook.com/aidshealth and follow us on Twitter (News - Alert): @aidshealthcare.


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