By Khadija Allen

The Ford Foundation has announced that a $25 million extension will be used to combat HIV/AIDS in the demoralized Southern communities of the United States. The effort will drive District of Columbia and nine southern states that have among the highest rates of HIV and AIDS cases, and advance the cause of treating blacks, Hispanics and women.

Ford has made incremental steps to funding the initiative in order to address the HIV disease and preventing discrimination in midst of the HIV-affected epidemic. For decades, Ford has also pointed to the human rights cause for support. Not only do these states suffer from lack of resources and untreatable preventions, but the South ranks as the lowest recipient of financial support in the South than any other region.

According to News Blaze:

The South accounted for almost half (46 percent) of new AIDS cases in the United States in 2007 and has the greatest number of people estimated to be living with AIDS, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Also in 2007, racial and ethnic minorities represented seven-in-ten (71 percent) of new AIDS cases and AIDS deaths (70 percent). Today, women represent a larger share of new HIV infections than they did earlier in the epidemic, with some 280,000 living with HIV or AIDS. Black women bear the brunt of this impact, accounting for nearly two-thirds (65 percent) of new AIDS cases among women, and having a prevalence rate 18 times that of white women.

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