Windy City Media Group Frontpage News

THE VOICE OF CHICAGO'S GAY, LESBIAN, BI, TRANS AND QUEER COMMUNITY SINCE 1985

home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2022-06-08
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
Donate

Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

Fifteen organizations receive funding from Illinois African American HIV/AIDS Response Act
-- From a press release
2022-07-22

This article shared 865 times since Fri Jul 22, 2022
facebook twitter google +1 reddit email


CHICAGO, IL — JULY 22, 2022 — Thirteen African American-led community-based organizations (of 15 possible as the maximum) in Illinois have been awarded grants ranging up to $500,000+ from the Illinois African American HIV/AIDS Response Act (AAHARA). As defined by the AAHARA, African-American/Black-led CBOs are defined as those which have a Board comprised of 51%+ African-Americans. However, it is notable that several CBO grantees which were notified that they are receiving grants, still do not have contracts from IDPH, nor are they being funded at the level for which they applied. Subsequently, there are unallocated dollars still remaining in the $15M funded to the AAHARA 2022-2024 budget, and even though IDPH has directed that program implementation begin on January 1, 2022, it has yet to issue many of the necessary contracts to the CBO grantees.

Recommendations by BLACHE (Black Leadership Advocacy Coalition for Healthcare Equity) and other AA-led CBOS have included that IDPH allocate remaining funds to:

Granting those CBOs which applied the dollar amount they requested or

An accelerated hiring and training initiative for new staff needed by all CBO grantees.

Other considerations, include allowing AA-led CBOS which previously did not apply, or applied and were denied (there are at least 3), to submit RFPs to the NOFO.

BACKGROUND

In June 2021, the Illinois legislative assembly passed a bill (led by State Rep. Lamont R. Robinson and Senator Kimberly Lightford, Senator Jacqueline Collins, Senator Greg Harris, and State Rep. Lashawn Ford) increasing funding of the African American HIV/AIDS Response Act from $1.2M to $15M. The funding was allocated from the State's COVID response funding — not the Illinois general fund nor from the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH.)

Several executive directors of African American led CBOS (most of which were past funding recipients), met with then-IDPH Director, Dr. Ngozi Ezike in July 2021 and other IDPH leadership, to address the history of mishandling by IDPH of the AAHARA, including:

pigeon-holing testing criteria so that cisgender men and women were not included as risk categories, and agencies were funded to test only African Americans who "self-identified" as transgender, MSMs and having "multiple sex partners."

compensating agencies for tests, but NOT for outreach staff to recruit and conduct testing

issuance of NOFOS up to six months late (October), though the Illinois Joint Committee on Administrative Rules (JCAR) Code stipulated that AAHARA NOFOs were to be issued in March-April of the fiscal year preceding funding, so that the process of awarding grants (issuance of award notifications, award letters, contacts) would be timely for July 1 grant program start (Illinois fiscal)

Consequently, late issuance of contracts leading to actual start dates as much as 6 and in some years 8 months LATE)

Extremely late Reimbursements (6months+)

Dr. Ezike directed her staff — particularly her then-chief-of-staff, Justin DeWitt and HIV/AIDS Leadership staff (Andrea Perez, Griselle Torres, Laura Vaught and others), to work on getting the NOFO for 2022-24 AAHARA funding, to address the needs/issues of CBOs and to issue it before "the Fall." AND to address IDPH HIV/AIDS STAFF SHORTAGE, so that there would be more expedient management of AAHARA funding and support to grantees. Though most of the aforementioned issues with previous AAHARA NOFOs were addressed, it wasn't posted on E-grams until after 6:00pm on Friday December 3, 2021 (5 months later!). And, it is NOT part of the FY 2022, but instead to be part of a calendar year funding period, with all $15M dollars to be spent over a 3-year period, ending December 31, 2024. IN ADDITION, unlike any NOFO since its inception in 2006, the new AAHARA NOFO had not one, but SIX categories, requiring SIX plans and budgets, and logic models. And yet, this NOFO due date was January 3, 2022. No consideration was made for office closings on both Christmas and New Year's (not only of applicants, but community partners and even that of IDPH), NOR the fact that many/most CBOS were operating at limited capacity and staffing issues due to the explosion of COVID-variant rates in December.

BLACHE, immediately contacted more than 15 African American led CBOs across the state to notify them of the IDPH e-Grams posting of the AAHARA NOFO as MOST were unaware. In addition, BLACHE requested that IDPH extend the deadline to January 15, 2022 due to the aforementioned reasons. The extension was denied. Still 10 Black-led CBOS attempted to apply. NO…all of them did not make the deadline, nor were all applicants awarded. The majority of those who received notification of awards, were issued contracts in April 2022 — but were directed by IDPH to "back-date" work to January 2022. A few STILL HAVE NOT received contracts from IDPH! And, how could they have hired and trained staff, and started the work specified in the RFPs they submitted with no award notification or contracts?!

Finally, on March 1, 2022, after continued work by BLACHE with Congressional representatives and those in the office of the Governor and Lieutenant Governor, IDPH finally reopened the AAHARA NOFO — though it still had the same start and end date (January 3, 2022 -December 31, 2024). AND applicants which received notification of awards, STILL DO HAVE NOT BEEN ISSUED CONTRACTS so they cannot hire or train additional staff needed/specified for program execution.

Consider, that same two IDPH staff persons were managing the $1.2M in AAHARA funding, with one contract and budget for 10 agencies at $100K each. They are also now responsible for managing $15M AAHARA funding to 13 agencies with 2-5 grants and budgets each. New IDPH leadership has been appointed and hired this year, but what about the number of staff assigned to administrate/manage the AAHARA funding, including budget reviews, award letter and contract issuance, monthly reports, processing of reimbursements, site visits and more?

NEXT STEPS

BLACHE is continuing its efforts to bring action, including IDPH adherence to policies so that Black-led CBOs are able to receive funding, hire and train staff, and implement their programs and services to help reduce the inequitable spread and impact of HIV/AIDS among Illinois' African American residents.

BLACHE is also addressing the continued inequity of funding relative to IDPH's HIV/AIDS budget of $103M, of which only $1.7M has been granted to African American CBOs.

BLACHE will be addressing the need for the Illinois Legislature to include funding for the AAHARA in the State's 2024 general fund — as the current funding ends December 31, 2024 and only exists because of emergency COVID funding to the State from the Federal government.

For additional information on BLACHE, please visit:

www.facebook.com/BLACHEIllinoishttps://blacheillinois.com/ .


This article shared 865 times since Fri Jul 22, 2022
facebook twitter google +1 reddit email

  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

Center on Halsted hosting monkeypox vaccine clinics
2022-08-10
Center on Halsted, 3656 N. Halsted St., continues its monkeypox vaccine clinics through August. These clinics are for first-dose vaccinations only. Online registration for each clinic opens at 10 a.m. each Wednesday prior to that respective ...


Gay News

Another queer candidate is part of Chicago mayoral race
2022-08-10
In addition to incumbent Lori Lightfoot as well as Ald. Raymond Lopez and media figure DJ Doran, there is a new LGBTQ+ candidate in the race for Chicago mayor. According to their website, J Saxon "is ...


Gay News

Chicago Ald. Sophia King enters mayoral race
2022-08-10
Chicago Ald. Sophia King (4th Ward) has officially entered the Chicago mayoral race. "I love this city. We need a Chicago that's safer AND stronger," King says in the video, according to NBC Chicago. "Let's put ...


Gay News

Dance for Life 2022 taking place Aug. 13 at the Auditorium Theatre
2022-08-09
-- From a press release - Chicago Dancers United (CDU), which supports the health and wellness of Chicago's professional dance community, presents seven companies and a world premiere finale for its 31st annual fundraiser, Dance for Life 2022. The event takes place ...


Gay News

Montreal Pride Parade is canceled
2022-08-08
Citing security concerns, the organizers of the Fierte Montreal Pride Parade abruptly canceled the Aug. 7 event at the last minute, The Washington Blade reported. The other events scheduled at the Esplanade of the Olympic Park—T-Dance ...


Gay News

Drag show finally takes place at UpRising Bakery and Cafe
2022-08-08
After a series of events that encompassed everything from vandalism to meetings with village officials to a visit from Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker, LGBTQ+-owned Lake in the Hills business UpRising Bakery and Cafe finally held its ...


Gay News

NATIONAL Okla. schools, Tenn. lawsuit, political items, Mich. library
2022-08-07
Video below - Oklahoma public schools have started requiring students from kindergarten to college to complete "biological sex affidavits" if they want to compete in school sports, in accordance with a state law that took effect earlier this year, ...


Gay News

WORLD Zelensky, French position, UK drag-queen shows, triathlons
2022-08-07
Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky confirmed he will ask Ukraine's government to look into legalizing same-sex marriage after the war with Russia ends, PinkNews reported. Ukraine's constitution defines marriage as between a man and a woman. Last ...


Gay News

Uganda government forces LGBTQ+ group to shut down
2022-08-07
An LGBTQI+-rights group in Uganda said the country's government forced it to shut down, according to The Washington Blade. Sexual Minorities Uganda (SMUG), in a press release, said Uganda's National ...


Gay News

Pritzker visits UpRising Bakery and Cafe
2022-08-06
On Aug. 5, Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker met with Corrina Sac, owner of Lake in the Hills business UpRising Bakery and Café, as well as leaders from Equality Illinois and Woodstock Pride and Illinois state Rep. ...


Gay News

POLITICS Milwaukee gets RNC in '24; Chicago among DNC hopefuls
2022-08-06
Milwaukee will host the 2024 Republican National Convention (RNC). According to Politico, RNC committee chair Ronna McDaniel tweeted, "I am excited to announce that the RNC has voted unanimously to select Milwaukee as the host city ...


Gay News

Indiana Gov. Holcomb signs bill banning most abortions
2022-08-06
Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb has signed a bill that would ban most abortions—making it the first state to pass a restrictive law against the procedure since the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade earlier this ...


Gay News

CDPH, community partners provide monkeypox update as Market Days nears
2022-08-05
With the event known as Northalsted Market Days happening Aug. 6-7—and with tens of thousands of people expected to attend—the Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH) and community partners held a press conference Aug. 4 about ...


Gay News

Sinema plans to sign on Senate Democrats' climate, health and tax bill
2022-08-05
U.S. Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-Arizona) announced Aug. 4 that she will "move forward" with Democrats' massive climate, prescription drug and spending bill, after fellow party members appeared to reach an agreement about her concerns with the ...


Gay News

Cook County Commissioner Morrison calls for hearing to address monkeypox outbreak
2022-08-04
-- From a press release - SCHAUMBURG, Ill. — Aug, 4, 2022 —Cook County Commissioner Kevin Morrison (District 15) has introduced a resolution calling for a public hearing in the Cook County Health and Hospitals Committee that will convene Monday, Aug. 8, ...


 



Copyright © 2022 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 
 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS







Sponsor
Sponsor


 

Sponsor


Donate


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Advanced Search     
Windy City Queercast      Queercast Archives     
Press  Releases      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast      Blogs     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam     
Privacy Policy     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.