December 01, 2005
"We have made great strides in the United States in the fight against AIDS," said the governor. "But more can be done. AIDS is a global disease, wreaking havoc on many third world countries and leaving broken families and orphaned children in its wake. I encourage all Alaskans to recognize this day by dimming their lights for five minutes tonight or by participating in other AIDS-awareness activities."
President Bush has ordered the White House and U.S. embassies around the world to dim their lights at 7 p.m. local time and has invited states, communities and the people of the United States to join in this national recognition.
About 40 million people around the world are infected with HIV and the disease is expected to claim the lives of approximately three million people this year. Africa, though only 10 percent of the world's population, is home to half the world's HIV infections.
In Alaska, over 1,000 cases of HIV infections were reported to the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services, Section of Epidemiology through Dec. 31, 2004. Of these, nearly 700 were reported with AIDS and 300 with HIV infection without AIDS.
335 Alaskans are known to have died of AIDS.
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