Tuesday, 7/18 at 9pm on WBAI/NY 99.5FM and streaming at wbai.org

Tune into WBAI tonight for a one-hour fund drive special by Out-FM, when we’ll play excerpts of the recent conference co-sponsored by Out-FM and ACT UP/NY titled 30 Years of ACT UP/NY: Hidden Histories and Voices, Lessons Learned. A wide range of activists told short, pithy stories about the creative, powerful, and often-successful campaigns on many AIDS injustices that have rarely been reported by other media.  Tonight you’ll hear just a few of the 32 voices presented at the conference:

•    Sharonann Lynch, formerly with Health GAP (Global Access Project) and Fed Up Queers, about the hugely successful campaign to make AIDS medications available to 17 million people in the Global South,
•    Luis Santiago, formerly with the ACT UP Latina/o Caucus, about the successful effort to form ACT UP/Puerto Rico, which dramatically increased funding of AIDS services and decreased stigma.
•    Kate Barnhart, formerly with ACT UP’s Youth Education Life Line, about the creative, audacious campaign that pressured the NYC Board of Education to institute AIDS education and condom availability in public high schools.
•    The late Katrina Haslip (an excerpt from a new documentary about women AIDS activists) about the campaign to demand that the Centers for Disease Control broaden the definition of AIDS to include illnesses experienced mainly by women and injection drug users – which succeeded shortly after Katrina died, never having been diagnosed as having AIDS and thus qualifying for federal benefits.

For a $50 pledge, we'll send you a copy of an mp3 CD of this historic, 7-hour conference). Pledging during the 9pm hour on Tuesday is critical to your support for Out-FM being counted. Our continuation on the air could depend on the donations we raise. We were threatened with removal from the air last fall and it was only your calls and letters that got us back on. To pledge, call 516-620-3602 or go to give2wbai.org . If you can’t pledge during tonite’s show, you can call or go online any time to pledge for this premium – or make a gift of any amount on behalf of your favorite show, Out-FM.

WBAI, which has steadfastly refused to take corporate advertising, is in a precarious situation and we are calling on listeners to give as generously as possible. WBAI, through its parent Pacifica Foundation, is being sued by the billiondollar Empire State Realty Trust, which rents space for the station’s transmitter and is demanding $2.1 million in back rent and $2 million dollars more in future rent. They are also refusing to allow WBAI to opt out of the contract. If granted by the judge, these terms would devastate not just WBAI, but also the parent Pacifica Foundation.

When WBAI’s rental contract was up for renewal in 2005, the Empire State Building took advantage of the 9/11 destruction of the World Trade Center (where other stations’ antennas were housed) and built in a very steep rent-escalator clause into the station’s 15-year contract – which today stands at $52,000 per month! In 2014, when Pacifica explained to Empire State that we could rent at a similar location for ¼ the price, they agreed to accept $12,500 to keep our business. Now, with new, more ruthless management, they've decided to try to collect the full amount of back and future rent and have been unwilling to negotiate a settlement. Meanwhile, the station must keep paying its basic operating costs, while saving funds for a possible settlement.More than a dozen NYC elected officials at the state and local level have publicly called for Empire State Realty Trust to negotiate in good faith with WBAI/Pacifica. Reach out to your representative and ask them to support this effort. For details, click here. Help save the station that has served the people consistently for 57 years!