RALEIGH, N.C. — The Rev. Jesse Jackson's political organization on Sunday backed equal rights for homosexuals and called for a stepped-up federal campaign against AIDS.
The group said the government should spend $7 billion to fight acquired immune deficiency syndrome and get its funds from the country's military budget.
"Human rights are human rights for all," Ron Daniels, executive director of the National Rainbow Coalition, said. "And the gay and lesbian people within society must be respected and will be respected."
The group also released a position paper on AIDS that demanded a "massive" federal education campaign targeting minorities and high-risk groups such as homosexuals, hemophiliacs and intravenous drug users.
The paper also recommended government-funded treatment, more money for research, abolition of mandatory testing and cooperation with worldwide efforts to cure the disease.
It criticized the Reagan Administration's response to AIDS as "a fragmented approach characterized by militant neglect and opportunistic intervention."