By Abiola Lawson

boston planning councilWant to learn about the latest HIV data and policy issues? Want to network with other HIV/AIDS service providers and consumers? Do you ever wonder how decisions about federal HIV/AIDS funding in the Boston EMA region are made?

The Boston Eligible Metropolitan Area (EMA) HIV Health Services Planning Council is currently accepting applications for the 2013-2014 term which begins September 2013!

What is the Planning Council? The Planning Council is an independent planning body appointed by the Mayor of Boston, working with the Boston Public Health Commission to organize, plan, evaluate, and prioritize federally funded HIV services in the Boston EMA. The mission of the Planning Council is to improve the quality of the lives of persons with HIV/AIDS by responding to their medical and health-related service needs.

As Shirley Royster, former Planning Council chair said, “The Planning Council is a place to use your voice to speak for your needs and the needs of others in the community who are unable to speak for themselves. Your seat on the Planning Council puts you at the table where life enriching decisions are being made.”

Who Can Join? Anyone living in the 10-county region comprising the Part A Boston EMA who has a strong commitment to improving the lives of people living with HIV/AIDS can join the Planning Council. People living with HIV are strongly encouraged to apply, no health policy background or expertise is required, and training is provided for all members.

How To Apply: Applicants are required to submit an application form and a letter of reference. We are currently accepting applications until June 28, 2013. Please mail or fax the completed application to:

Planning Council Support
Boston Public Health Commission
1010 Massachusetts Ave – 2nd floor
Boston, MA 02118
E-Fax: 617-419-1340

You can give us a call at 617-534-2462, or email for additional information or to request an application. Also, check out our website to download the application and learn more about the Planning Council!

Help make a difference. Get involved. Help make lives better.

Abiola Lawson is a program coordinator with the Public Health Commission, supporting the Planning Council’s work.