Impulse Group DC, a social and entertainment-based HIV awareness and advocacy group with particular focus on outreach to queer communities of color, sent out a press release heavily criticizing Trump's previous proposals to cut federal HIV programs, including the president's call to eliminate the Minority AIDS Initiative.
Sullivan, who's a professor at Emory University specializing in HIV research, did not explicitly criticize the administration's decision to fire him and his fellow panel members, adding that there are plenty of scientists who can fill his position as long as US policy sticks to "well-established" and science-based research. "The Obama administration dismissed the George W. Bush administration appointees to PACHA in order to bring in new voices".
Also of note, during the Obama administration, almost all of George W. Bush's appointees were eliminated prior to new appointees being named.
Trump's termination of council members isn't a first time an administration cleaned house on PACHA.
The ONE Campaign, which endeavors to fight diseases like HIV/AIDS, published a study in November that said the White House's $800 million proposed cuts to HIV/AIDS efforts would lead to "the first global increase in new HIV infections since 1995, with almost 200,000 additional HIV infections in the first year".
"I just am coming to the acknowledgment that the traditional tactics of politicking and policy and strategy and negotiation, the kind of standard tools that we're trying to use, that the status quo is no longer acceptable", Maldonado said.
The White House did not immediately respond for comment.
It is not yet clear when the new appointments will be made.
The firing of the remaining board members provides further evidence that the Trump administration isn't interested in the issue.