In recognition of World AIDS Day, Governor Cuomo made a series of announcements regarding the next phase of New York State’s Plan to End the AIDS Epidemic in the State. New York State is a national leader in providing high quality support services to individuals infected with HIV/AIDS, directing more than $2.5 billion annually to fight against the disease.
“New York was once the epicenter of the AIDS crisis – but now we are showing the nation how to fight back and make this epidemic a thing of the past,” said Governor Cuomo. “We are making rapid progress toward a future where more people know their status, medication is easily accessible, and new cases are more and more rare. As we mark World AIDS Day, we remember all those we have lost, and we recommit ourselves to ending this epidemic once and for all.”
Today, the Governor is committing $200 million in new funding toward HIV/AIDS efforts, which is in addition to the $2.5 billion in public funding that the state currently directs toward addressing the disease. He is also calling on the federal government to increase its contribution nationwide for housing assistance for people living with HIV and AIDS. Funding from the federal government on housing assistance for people living with HIV nationwide has remained effectively stagnant for more than 5 years at less than $300 million annually, and renewed support from Washington is vital to maintaining the progress that has been achieved thus far in addressing the epidemic.
Further, the Governor announced that in addition to the billions of dollars the State directs to HIV/AIDS efforts, New York State will make additional financial and programmatic commitments to ensure that New York State Ends AIDS by 2020, including:
- expanding the availability of affordable housing and providing additional housing assistance for those living with HIV;
- making life insurance available to individuals between the ages of 30 and 60 living with HIV;
- investing more funding into Medicaid Managed Care Plans; and
- investing more funding to help enhance services at “One Stop” STD clinics in New York City.
Protestors around the world took to the streets today to tell the leaders of more than 150 countries gathered at the Paris COP21 Summit that the time to do something about climate change in now.
“There’s no Planet B” in the fight against global warming. That was the message coming out of the world’s biggest day of climate change activism ahead of the Paris COP21 summit.
In the French capital, where demonstrations were banned after the recent deadly attacks claimed by ISIL, activists laid out more than 20,000 shoes in the Place de la Republique to symbolize absent marchers.
About 10,000 people joined arms to form a human chain through Paris, along the route of a banned march.
Violent clashes also broke out in the city, with riot police using tear gas to disperse around 200 protesters. French President Francois Hollande accused the violent protesters of dishonoring the memory of the dead.
Across the Channel, in London, around 50-thousand people marched through the city. And there were some famous faces among them.
“Twenty years ago, we used to have climate change marches. It was always seen as a sort of side issue. Now it has become the issue of the 21st Century,” said actress Emma Thompson.
In Sydney, Australia, around 45,000 people are estimated to have marched through the central business district towards the Opera House. Protesters held placards reading: “There is no Planet B,” and “Say no to burning national forests for electricity.”
More than two-thousand climate change events were held around the globe in all, with total turnout running into hundreds of thousands of people, according to organizers.
The National Gay Pilots Association announced today that it has partnered with United Airlines after the airline became the organizations sole Diamond Level partner.
‘The National Gay Pilots Association closely reflects United’s working together culture – based on dignity, inclusion and respect,’ said Greg Jones, the airline’s managing director of Diversity and Inclusion in a statement. “Supporting the NGPA and the dedicated pilots throughout its ranks is another way we can honor the diversity of our customers, employees and the communities we serve.”
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By Matthew Wexler
Allegiance, the new Broadway musical currently playing at the Longacre Theatre, isn’t perfect. But neither is America’s track record when it comes to minority populations. Our country is currently in heated debates over our Muslim communities, some even calling for mandatory “databases,” in response to the recent ISIS attacks in Paris.
“The sense we get now is that it’s not only worse for Arabs and Muslims,” said Abed Ayoub, national policy director at the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee, in a recent article on CNN. “The sense we get now is that it’s worse for all immigrant and brown communities as a whole.”
Keep reading over at The Broadway Blog.
If you haven’t already noticed, some of your favorite hotel spas have received a major facelift. They’re now bigger, providing more ameni- ties (cucumber and chlorophyll water), more interesting spa treat- ments (biomeditation massage, anyone?), and offering services that extend outside the spa parameters (rooftop yoga). But you shouldn’t be surprised. Hotels and resorts are putting a lot of money into their spas, which have been emerging as the biggest trend in hospitality infrastructure. In fact, according to SpaFinder, the largest marketing company for the well- ness industry, wellness tourism is a $2 trillion industry, already representing a $439 billion US market. With this growing demand, many experts predicts a nine percent growth through 2017, 50 percent faster than “regular” tourism.
Needless to say, health and wellness is a priority for vacationers. “The spa experience is now much more accessible to consumers than ever before,” says Michael Tompkins, openly gay spa enthusiast and chairman of ISPA, the International Spa Association, a global company that is recog- nized as the professional organization and voice of the spa industry. “In 1999, there were 1.5 spas for every 100,000 people living in the US com- pared to 6.4 spas per 100,000 people at the end of 2013. We love that trend—imagine the stats in 2015!”
They are all just prelude to the important one, Giving Tuesday. Next week on the first, take a step back from the consumer cliff’s edge, and reconnect with your priorities. Support the non-profit organizations and charities that matter most to you. Yes, there’s been a ton of (deserved) bad press lately about some of the biggies: Salvation Army and Goodwill having strayed from their missions of doing what is best and doing, instead, what is best for them at the expense of others…but don’t let that dissuade or discourage you. Find a smaller organization with their fingers more firmly on the pulse of the communities they wish to serve, and lend your dollars. If you don’t have dollars, give hours, of volunteer service. Or give both.
THANKFUL FOR FAMILY—Whether it is the one we were born into, the one we have gathered to us, or a beautiful blend of all of it, we hope you have time to spend laughing, connecting, and enjoying the company of others.
THANKFUL FOR ABUNDANCE—When we have seen firsthand the broader world where hunger and malnourishment are rampant, we hope you enjoy a day of plenty, and appreciation for it.
THANKFUL FOR EXTENDING OUR REACH—During the holiday season, the giving instinct flourishes, and we have a greater inclination to reach out and help others, through donating time or money to causes about which we care.
THANKFUL FOR A WIDER WORLD—And our greater awareness of our global community. We hope you are neither defeated nor depressed by the inequities faced by people around the world, some in places you may have visited, some in places you may never want to go, but we hope all of them inspire and energize you to find a way to get involved.
THANKFUL FOR AN ENVIRONMENT THAT REPLENISHES—In spite of society’s repeated blows and damage done, the earth has a remarkable, if increasingly challenged, ability to heal itself. We hope to learn greater ways to task the planet with less and less need for repair.
THANKFUL FOR YOU, and wishing you the best this holiday.
HAPPY THANKSGIVING from all of us with love!
Forget the turkey, we’re looking right at you Iron Horse Royale. This Thanksgiving, tszuj up your holidays with this delicious cocktail from our friends over at The Iron Horse in Westchester, NY. Abundant with seasonal flavors like apple and, um, wine, this cocktail simple, delicious and an unexpected cocktail for your Thanksgiving guests or for yourself. (We all know that holidays go down way better with a nice cup of merriment.)
Cold martini glass add two drop bitters, swirl it about. Add cinnamon stick and serve.
Carly Rae Jepsen is really really really getting us in the holiday mood.
The Canadian “Call Me Maybe” singer released a cover of “Last Christmas” on Friday, and her take on the 1985 classic by Wham! has had fans jingling their bells since.
After releasing her rendition, Jepsen, who turns 30 today, shared a message with fans to announce the new release.
“Winter white. Soft focus. Candy canes. Waves,” she wrote the photo. “Here it is – our #LastChristmas WHAM cover. Hope you enjoy it.”
Jepsen puts her own spin on things with jazzy sax riffs and her signature pop vocals, all the while staying true to the 80’s pull.
Listen to the full song below…