National Call: World Tuberculosis Day 2016: It’s time to fight for every life
This year’s World Tuberculosis Day on March 24th will be marked with the unfortunate distinction that we have now allowed this preventable, curable disease to become the world’s biggest communicable killer. The millenniums-old lung disease tuberculous (TB) now outranks even HIV/AIDS in the number of lives it claims—over 1.5 million a year. This month will see two important events take place in Parliament: the tabling of the new government’s first budget and the reestablishment of the HIV/AIDS and Tuberculosis (HAT) Caucus. Throughout 2016 members of the HAT Caucus will be working together across party lines to ensure that Canada makes a generous pledge to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria. But Canada’s contribution to this replenishment effort must not come at the expense of other life-saving poverty alleviation initiatives. That’s why we must reach out to ministers in the new government’s Cabinet to ensure that Budget 2016 includes an immediate, real increase to the total amount of development assistance and a costed timeline to achieve 0.7 percent of national income devoted to development assistance by 2020. We’ll be joined by Louie Zepeda-Teng, a TB survivor and advocate from the Global Fund Advocates Network (GFAN)! You can read about her here.