A Banner Day for DC Appleseed

Yesterday, DC Appleseed saw important advances in three of our projects, and I want to thank our foundation, pro bono, and government partners who made this possible. Here’s what happened.

First, Mayor Muriel Bowser signed the Fast-Track Cities Declaration and recommitted her administration to our public-private partnership that will result in a plan next spring to end the HIV epidemic in D.C. We’ve received thousands of hours of pro bono support for this project from the law firms Hogan Lovells LLP and Paul, Weiss LLP. Our long-time funder-partner at the Washington AIDS Partnership helped shape the “End the Epidemic” project, and we’ve also received funding from the Eugene and Agnes E. Meyer Foundation and the Morris & Gwendolyn Cafritz Foundation. We’re also grateful for the leadership of HAHSTA Senior Deputy Director Michael Kharfen and DOH Director Dr. LaQuandra Nesbitt.

Second, the D.C. Council passed legislation that will give D.C. residents a clearer voice in crafting their end-of-life care. District residents who are nearing the end of life will soon, in consultation with healthcare providers, be able to draft a MOST form–a medical order detailing their wishes for end-of-life care that is part of their permanent medical record. The law firms Hughes Hubbard & Reed LLP and Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP comprise our pro bono team, and our funders are the Meyer and Cafritz foundations. We also salute the leadership of Councilmembers Yvette Alexander and Mary Cheh on this important legislation.

Third, Councilmember David Grosso introduced legislation that would bring public financing of elections to the District. We have worked with both Councilmember Grosso and Councilmember Kenyan McDuffie on this issue, based on the efforts of our pro bono partner Arent Fox LLP. That firm’s research and analysis helped to develop the case for public financing of elections in the District in order to make local government more responsive to the public interest, lessen corporate involvement in elections, and help restore public trust in government. Our work on campaign finance reform has been funded by the Meyer and Cafritz foundations. The work builds our other efforts to enhance D.C. Democracy, efforts that are separately funded by the Naomi and Nehemiah Cohen and Herb Block foundations.

None of these advances–or our work on our other 12 projects–could be achieved without our government, pro bono, and funder partners. But we also need your support to continue this work in the coming year. Please consider including DC Appleseed in your year-end giving.

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