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Donald Trump Terminated All Remaining Members of the HIV/AIDS Council

Donald Trump Terminated All Remaining Members of the HIV/AIDS Council

The White House has reportedly fired the members of the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS (PACHA) without explanation.

He later confirmed to The Independent that all of the remaining advisers had been let go, citing three members who had received termination letters from the administration.

"I can only speculate", he said.

"With no explanation, the White House has terminated members of the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS amid widespread discontent with President Trump's approach to the epidemic", The Washington Blade's Chris Johnson reported late Thursday night. "I think where the discrepancy comes in is why a year later, number one? No respect for their service", Schoettes wrote on the social media site.

Ulysses Burley, a former Pacha member who left with Mr Schoettes in June, told The Independent that he had heard from other, Obama-era appointees who were suddenly dismissed this week.

Obama similarly cleared out George W. Bush's PACHA appointees upon taking office, but with the mission of revamping the council to take on a more active role after it was largely sidelined by Bush.

"To the best of my knowledge it's not a disbandment of the council altogether, but a dismissal of any pre-Trump nominees", he added, "which in my opinion might be more risky than not having a council at all". "I was an Obama appointee and my term was continuing until 2018". "In the fact of CDC projections that 1 in 2 black gay men and 1 in 13 D.C. residents will become HIV-positive within their lifetimes, it is unconscionable that we would have a President that would not only propose massive cuts to HIV programs but would also remove the entire PACHA membership".

The White House did not respond to requests for comment.

President Donald Trump waves as he visits first responders at West Palm Beach Fire Rescue in West Palm Beach, Florida, on December 27.

Almost a year into Trump's presidency, the White House has yet to appoint a director of the Office of National AIDS Policy.

The Trump administration has pursued cuts to AIDS-related programs at home and overseas, for instance at the Centers for Disease Control and the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, respectively.

Six members of PACHA resigned from the council back in June, stating that their departure then had to do with Trump's negligence on the important issue.

For Worlds AIDS Day, the Trump administration did not mention LGBTQ people.

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