Three At­lanta or­ga­ni­za­tions get HIV/AIDS grants

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Ge­or­gia Equal­ity and Ge­or­gia Stonewall Democrats is­sued en­dorse­ments for the May 22 pri­mary elec­tions.

Ge­or­gia Equal­ity chose former Ge­or­gia House Mi­nor­ity Leader Stacey Abrams over former state Rep. Stacey Evans for gov­er­nor. The win­ner of the May 22 pri­mary will face off against the Repub­li­can pri­mary win­ner in Novem­ber. Lieu­tenant Gov­er­nor Casey Ca­gle is the cur­rent fron­trun­ner on the GOP side. The group also chose Sarah Riggs Amico for lieu­tenant gov­er­nor, Cindy Zeldin for in­sur­ance com­mis­sioner, Sid Chap­man for state school su­per­in­ten­dent and Richard Keat­ley for la­bor com­mis­sioner. Ge­or­gia Stonewall Democrats have yet to is­sue en­dorse­ments in those races.

Both groups en­dorsed LGBTQ Reps. Park Can­non and Karla Dren­ner. Ge­or­gia Equal­ity also en­dorsed LGBTQ Reps. Sam Park and Renitta Shan­non.

For the full list of en­dorse­ments, go to www.geor­giae­qual­ and­or­gia

The El­ton John AIDS Foun­da­tion was joined by the El­iz­a­beth Tay­lor AIDS Foun­da­tion and the Aileen Getty Foun­da­tion in is­su­ing grants to or­ga­ni­za­tions na­tion­wide. To­gether, th­ese groups pledged $650,000 to win the fight against HIV/AIDS in the Amer­i­can South. Among the grant re­cip­i­ents were three Ge­or­gia or­ga­ni­za­tions.

The Ge­or­gia Equal­ity Foun­da­tion re­ceived a grant of $75,000; the Racial Jus­tice Ac­tion Cen­ter also re­ceived $75,000; and SPARK, a re­pro­duc­tive jus­tice or­ga­ni­za­tion, re­ceived $50,000. Ge­or­gia Equal­ity is the largest LGBTQ rights ad­vo­cacy group in the state. They fo­cus on in­creas­ing fair­ness, safety and op­por­tu­nity for the LGBTQ com­mu­nity through political ac­tion. The Racial Jus­tice Ac­tion Cen­ter is a mul­tira­cial or­ga­ni­za­tion ded­i­cated to build­ing so­cial jus­tice on grass­roots mod­els de­vel­oped by work­ing-class and poor peo­ple of color. SPARK is a so­cial jus­tice as­so­ci­a­tion ded­i­cated to is­sues of re­pro­duc­tive jus­tice. The group fo­cuses on causes which affect women of color, and trans and queer peo­ple of color. From 2006 to the present, EJAF grants to At­lanta or­ga­ni­za­tions have to­taled $3.1 mil­lion.

Jeff Gra­ham, ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor of Ge­or­gia Equal­ity, told Ge­or­gia Voice that this was “the third or fourth year that Ge­or­gia Equal­ity has re­ceived an El­ton John AIDS Foun­da­tion grant.”

“I’ve worked with the El­ton John AIDS Foun­da­tion as a grantee, as well as some­one who’s provided in­for­ma­tion to them over the course of the last 20 years or so,” he said. This year’s do­na­tion will fund the Youth HIV Pol­icy Ad­vi­sors pro­gram, which matches “elected of­fi­cials and clergy with HIV-pos­i­tive youth ad­vo­cates who serve as their spe­cial ad­vi­sors on the is­sue.”

The El­ton John AIDS Foun­da­tion was set up in 1992. The EJAF seeks to fund and sup­port new treat­ments, ser­vices and ed­u­ca­tional pro­grams for in­di­vid­u­als who are liv­ing with HIV. In its life­time, the Foun­da­tion has raised an es­ti­mated $200 mil­lion dol­lars in 55 coun­tries. Ac­cord­ing to a 2014 Huff­in­g­ton Post story, Fun­ders for LGBTQ Is­sues rec­og­nized EJAF “as the largest fun­der of pro­grams for black les­bian, gay, bi­sex­ual, trans­gen­der and queer in­di­vid­u­als.”

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