Pills Profits Protest
timeline 1980 - 2005
“Slim Disease” – later known as
AIDS -- began ravaging cities like Kinshasa, Dar es Salaam and other
African hotspots, as well as poverty-stricken Haiti.
US activists form ACT–UP – the AIDS Coalition to Unleash
Power, and take to the streets in a Wall Street protest against
US government inaction to AIDS, and to demand lifesaving AIDS drugs.
The protest spurs the the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to
shorten the drug approval process by two years.
June 4-9, 1989
As ACT-UP demonstrates at the Fifth International Conference on
AIDS in Montreal demanding a “compassionate use” AIDS
drug access program for dying patients, protests by African and
Latin American activists there garner global headlines.
May 21, 1990
1000 protesters from ACT-UP "Storm the NIH (National Institutes
of Health)" to demand more AIDS treatments. In South Africa
and Brazil, health authorities warn of fast-moving epidemics.
September 1, 1991
2500 AIDS activists marched on President Bush's
vacation home in Kennebunkport, Maine to demand leadership, declaring
that ‘THE AIDS CRISIS CAN END.’
Haitian activists join ACT UP, Housing Works and the Coalition for
the Homeless to protest detention of HIV-positive Haitians detainment
camp in Guantanomo.
Brazilian activists issue a “Brazilian Manifesto” at
7th International AIDS conference in Vancouver to demand access
to treatment for millions living in global South.
French President Jacques Chirac launches the French Therapeutic
Solidarity Fund (FSTI) to fund pilot treatment projects in Francophone
Thai protesters push their government to produce generic drugs and
battle the multinational companies over high prices of imported
South Africa’s Treatment Action Campaign leads the first large-scale
march and protest for AIDS drugs during the 13th International AIDS
Conference in Durban. In Washington, “Jubilee 2000”
activist mount a “Drop the Debt” campaign to demand
new money to fight AIDS.
February 9, 2001
The pioneering Indian drug company Cipla announces its new $360
a year generic HIV combination therapy – a fraction of the
then-$10,000 a year US pricetag for treatment.
June 25, 2001
World leaders at the the United Nations Special Session on AIDS
(UNGASS) issue a Declaration of Committment to tackle AIDS and UN
leader Kofi Annann discusses a Global Fund for AIDS, TB and Malaria.
In Doha, Qatar, the 142-member World Trade Organization issues a
ruling allowing the poorest countries to legally access generic
AIDS drugs – a landmark step.
The World Health Organization announces its “3 x 5”
plan to treat 3 million people by 2005.
President Bush launches his global AIDS “PEPFAR” plan
which promotes abstinence but provides new money for treatment too.
Meanwhile Brazil publishes new reports showing that generic AIDS
drugs have boosted AIDS survival and saved millions for the country.
March 15, 2005
Health GAP joins “Drop the Debt” activists to protest
at a Washington meeting of G8 leaders; weeks later, the US and Great
Britain back a debt forgiveness plan for the worlds poorest countries.