Pop legend Sir Elton John has appealed to members of the US Senate this week to redouble its efforts to eradicate AIDS, warning of a “ruthless pandemic” should efforts slacken.
Sir Elton praised the efforts of the US President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) and urged Congress to use its power to ensure America’s continued commitment to the global campaign against AIDS.
“The AIDS epidemic is not over and America’s continued leadership is critical,” Sir Elton said.”We cannot afford to let the window close if our efforts flag. Drug resistance will surface, transmission rates will rise and this disease which knows no boundaries will once again become a ruthless pandemic with disastrous and far-reaching consequences.
“I have stood at too many besides in America and England and across Africa helplessly watching people die in pain. The thought that we might go back to those dark days is unthinkable.”
The Elton John AIDS Foundation (EJAF) believes Aids can be beaten and is one of the world’s largest HIV grant makers. It raises funds for evidence-based programmes and policies and has raised more than $321 million for the treatment and prevention of HIV/AIDS since its inception in 1992.