AIDSWatch, an annual advocacy event in Washington, DC, to educate Congress about HIV, will take place Monday, April 28, and Tuesday, April 29. Hundreds of advocates living with HIV and their allies will participate. This event is a partnership of the Treatment Access Expansion Project (TAEP), AIDS United and the U.S. People Living with HIV Caucus.

Sponsors include: AIDS Action Committee, amfAR, AIDS Project Los Angeles, Campaign to End AIDS (C2EA), fhi360, Community Education Group, Human Rights Campaign, International Association of Providers of AIDS Care, Legacy Community Health Services, National Minority AIDS Council and Pozitively Healthy.

The first day will train participants on current science, legislative agendas and conducting effective meetings with their elected representatives and their staff. Congressional visits will occur on Monday afternoon.

The Positive Leadership Awards will be given Monday night. The recipients include Tre Alexander, an activist with experience working with youth, as well as currently and formerly incarcerated people living with HIV, and Robert Suttle, assistant director of The Sero Project, which combats stigma and injustice against HIV-positive people.

Two retiring members of Congress also will be honored. Representative Henry Waxman (D–Calif.) and Delegate Donna Christensen (D–V.I.) both have advocated on behalf of people with HIV/AIDS for decades.

Capitol Hill visits will continue throughout the day on Tuesday, but starting at noon C2EA will organize a gathering to demand Congress pass HR 1843, a bill that would begin to modernize federal and state laws that criminalize HIV-positive people.

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