A new online resource linking members of the LGBTIQ community to information and support relating to alcohol and other drug (AOD) use has been launched today by NSW’s leading LGBTI health organisation ACON.
Funded by Central and Eastern Sydney PHN, Pivot Point is a one-stop-shop for LGBTIQ community members who are looking for support in relation to their AOD use, which may be becoming difficult to manage and starting to negatively impact on their lives.
There are significant differences in AOD use in LGBTIQ communities when compared to the broader population, particularly in relation to drug type and consumption, and while most LGBTIQ people do not develop issues relating to AOD use, targeted interventions that assist in managing use, monitoring changes and getting support are important.
ACON CEO Nicolas Parkhill said the LGBTIQ community face a range of unique challenges which calls for tailored approaches to minimise the risk of harm.
“Helping our communities identify early signs of problems where they may need assistance with their AOD use requires sensitive messaging. While we know that most people in LGBTIQ communities who use drugs and/or alcohol do so in a non-problematic way, some experience substantial harms related to their use,” Mr Parkhill said.
“Community-oriented health promotion campaigns such as Pivot Point can better connect with our communities and enable means by which people can check in and get the support they need, which in turn improves the overall health of our communities.
“We know that LGBTIQ people can be reluctant to seek treatment because of concerns about prejudice and discrimination from more mainstream support services. We hope that a more specialised resource for LGBTIQ people, with support from experts in the AOD sector, will be able to reach more people via a peer-led approach – an approach we know our communities find accessible.”
As well as information on AOD and helpful strategies on quitting or reducing use, Pivot Point features an online self-assessment tool allowing visitors to gauge the risks from their AOD use. Directories for resources and services offer assistance to those seeking support.
ACON has also created a series of videos to raise awareness of Pivot Point and answer some of the most commonly asked questions on AOD use, support, self-care tips, personal stories and more. The videos can be accessed here.
Mr Parkhill commended Central and Eastern Sydney PHN for its commitment to helping people in LGBTIQ communities be better informed and supported.
“We’re extremely grateful to Central and Eastern Sydney PHN for recognising the needs of LGBTIQ people and for providing this funding, which enables us to significantly boost our ability to provide information, resources and client services to everyone within our communities.”
For more information, visit pivotpoint.org.au.
For more information please contact:
David Alexander, ACON Media and Communications
E: [email protected] T: +61 (02) 9206 2044 M: +61 (0)428 477 042