Windy City Times (Chicago) (04.24.13)
On May 9, the AIDS Legal Council of Chicago (ALCC) will host a benefit commemorating ALCC’s 25 years of service called "A Salute to ALCC.” The event will take place at Kirkland and Ellis LLP. ALCC supporters, staff, interns, past and present board members, and individual and corporate sponsors are the expected attendees. ALCC Executive Director Ann Hilton Fisher declared, “The response from the community surrounding our 25th anniversary has been tremendous, and we look forward to a wonderful evening to commemorate the life-saving legal work that the council does each day.”
ALCC works to preserve, promote, and protect the legal rights of HIV-impacted women, men, and children in the metropolitan Chicago area. The organization educates the public about HIV-related legal issues, provides direct legal services to people in need, and advocates for social policies that ensure fair treatment for all HIV/AIDS-impacted persons. The council employs a full-time staff of seven legal professionals, and is the only organization of its kind in the Midwest. In 2012, the council assisted over 900 clients with 1,600 cases, and currently serves a large and diverse client base.
When ALCC first started, it helped dying people live as long as possible and then die with dignity. With people living longer, ALCC shifted its priorities. ALCC now keeps clients of all ages stabilized and helps them navigate complex systems such as social security, Medicare, Medicaid, private insurance, and employment issues, with health insurance and managed care being ALCC’s current focus. ALCC helped clients stay a step ahead of their needs by providing information to them about the drug cocktail as it has evolved. ALCC also assists clients to comprehend immigration laws as well as the rules regarding working while receiving social security benefits. In January 2014, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act will go into full effect. ALCC’s current lobbying efforts involve making sure that Illinois opts into expanding Medicaid when the new health care law goes into effect. ALCC offers free training for other nonprofits and companies and works with other organizations, including mental health providers, HIV/AIDS providers, health care providers, and drug treatment providers.
Sponsors for the event are Kirkland & Ellis, Winston & Strawn, Sidley Austin, Jenner & Block, McDermott Will & Emery, DLA Piper, Mayer Brown, Schiff Hardin, Marshall Gerstein & Borun, Clark Hill, Wintersteen & Dunning, Reed Smith, Sidetrack, BestGayChicago.com, ChicagoPride.com, The L Stop, and Windy City Media Group. Tickets start at $50 and can be purchased at www.alcc25host.eventbrite.com. Also, a summer garden party will be held at Sidetrack, 3349 N. Halsted St., Chicago, on August 14, 6:00–9:00 p.m., to commemorate ALCC's 25 years of service to the community. Visit www.aidslegal.com for more information.