Obama and the Gays

What we learned from the recent press conference

Courtesy of the White House

President Obama interrupted The View yesterday morning to tell us about his 2012 budget with specifics about how it will affect LGBT people and people living with HIV and AIDS. Here’s what we learned about how LGBT folks fit into the big picture:

  • There will be an increase in “community relations service” in the Department of Justice to fight hate crimes.
  • There will also be an $18 million increase (five percent higher than last year) for the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission which helps enforce anti-discrimination laws that help protect LGBTs.
  • The administration proposed $132 million (some in grants) to state and local governments to fight bullying. This falls under the Department of Education’s own Successful, Safe and Healthy students program that addresses, in part, gay bullying and suicide.
  • The budget also increases HIV and AIDS funding for the Department of Health and Human Services by $219 million – and $173 million for the Department of Veterans Affairs. The funding for Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Justice Department will remain the same.
  • The Ryan White HIV/AIDS program will receive $940 million for the drug assistance program (that’s $80 million more than last year).
  • The Center for Disease Control and Prevention also receives more than a $20 million for programs designed for gay and bisexual men. And $22 million more is proposed for HIV education in cities around the country.

The entire press conference is available – including questions and answers with reporters – on the White House YouTube page.