As we dangle off the fiscal cliff

Posted on 12/27/2012 at 1:29 pm

The Bailey House Top 10 Champions and Scoundrels for 2012

2012 was a year packed with triumph and disasters from political conventions and Hurricane Sandy to HIV activists doing civil disobedience in the buff in Congressman Boehner’s office.  This was also a year filled with bittersweet memories of the early epidemic and Act-Up in David France’s “How to Survive a Plague”  and the smashing success of  the National AIDS Housing Coalition’s North American HIV/AIDS Housing and Healthcare Summit, which brought together 100’s of researchers, international policy makers and activists at the World Bank.

There were also other moments, some national and others close to home that caught our attention. As we dangle off the fiscal cliff in this last week of December, we want to share our Top 10 Champions and Scoundrels:

Champions

1.  Tied for #1 are Governor Cuomo and Speaker Christine Quinn for their staff’s work in getting us the equipment we needed to do the initial clean-up of Bailey-Holt House and for advocating for us with state and city agencies
2.  Bailey-Holt House residents who are managing being displaced and staying connected to us and each other
3.  M*A*C  AIDS Fund, Elton John AIDS Foundation, Rocking Moon Foundation and other donors for generous contributions to the Bailey-Holt House Emergency Fund
4.  The Imperial Court of New York for all of their support and campy entertainment
5.  NYC’s Rapid Repair program for replacing all of the Bailey-Holt House boilers with new, shiny ones
6.  VOCAL, Housing Works and Health Gap for their yearlong advocacy efforts
7.  The Bailey House 30th Gala and Auction Committee for planning what will be an amazing event on 3/28/13
8.  DIFFA and Broadway Cares for playing Santa with plentiful gifts for all BHH residents
9.  The “30 for 30” Campaign for relentless advocacy on behalf of HIV+ women
10.  NYS Office of Mental Health staff, who helped us open the new Behavioral Health Center in East Harlem

Scoundrels

1.  Hurricane Sandy and HASA tie for #1 for Sandy’s storm surge and for HASA’s refusal to reimburse us for over $300,000 in supportive services and operational expenses incurred post Sandy
2.  HASA for failing to cut red tape or assist with the Bailey-Holt House evacuation and rehousing effort after Sandy
3.  HASA staff who didn’t  seem to know that on October 29, 30th and 31st no one living in or near Bailey-Holt House could  call the HASA Service Line because their cell phones were dead and all the land lines were out
4.  NYC  Water Board for sending us a whopping November water bill for Bailey-Holt House even though it was vacant
5.  NYS Office of Medicaid Redesign for implementing the Health Home model without thinking through critical aspects of funding and care
6.  Congress for dangling all of us off the fiscal cliff
7.  Alabama, Georgia and other states, which are refusing Medicaid expansion while having some of the highest per capita rates of HIV infection in the nation
8.  “Test and Treat” proponents who fail to address homelessness
9.  Proponents of abstinence based programs for their willful disregard of evidence based HIV prevention
10.  The Westboro Baptist Church for just about everything

As we look forward to our 30th anniversary in 2013, we remain committed to helping men, women and young adults living with HIV/AIDS get housing and have access to care and services. After all these years we know more than ever that “The Future Starts with A Place to Live”. Happy New Year from all of us at Bailey House and here’s hoping that in 2013 the champions far outnumber the scoundrels in your life!

One Comment

  1. Catherine Allen says:

    As a long, long time resident, past peer counselor of Baily House Inc. I would also like to thank all of you that have helped. It took Sandy; a disaster to show me the true meaning of family. I can’t believe I entertained the though of staying at my temporary local. BHH may not be my permanent resident, but I will always be In the BH Family. Kevin and the rest of BH staff have been with me through-out, even-though they are not getting paid. My own family has not been this supportive. So, to though of you that have helped us ring in the New Year health and alive and a lot wiser. THANK YOU so much.
    And May the New Year bring you all the love I and and my peers have received through your donations and help.

    Cat.