L.A.-Based Minority AIDS Project in Danger of Closing Without Substantial Funding Increase, Founder Says
The Los Angeles-based Minority AIDS Project -- the first black AIDS organization in the United States -- might be forced to close unless it receives a large monetary donation, according to its founder Carl Bean, the Los Angeles Times reports. Bean, who is archbishop of the Unity Fellowship of Christ Church, founded MAP in 1985 and remains chair of the group's board. MAP provides HIV/AIDS-related services -- including case management, counseling, treatment adherence advice, health education, testing, a needle-exchange program and food provision -- for about 1,200 people monthly, one-third of whom are men. According to MAP CFO Rev. Charles Lanier, the group -- which normally operates on a $4 million annual budget -- will receive $2 million less in public funding because of government cuts. The group's caseload has increased by about 13% annually, MAP Executive Director Victor McKamie said. He added that he already has cut programs for women, men who have sex with men but do not consider themselves to be gay, homeless people, injection drug users, people living in poor housing, and programs providing food vouchers, transportation and housing. McKamie also has laid off 22 employees, accepted the resignation of about 15 people -- which equals about half the previous staff -- and cut executive pay by 10%. MAP, which received a $50,000 donation from the AIDS Healthcare Foundation in April -- currently is seeking private funding sources (Pollard-Terry, Los Angeles Times, 6/8).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.