CONTROLLING CHEMSEX is aware that:
- A big number of people can’t consider the idea of accessing any support service that is based on drop ins because of paranoia, stigma, etc. This part of the community is not getting any help.
- Lots of people can’t access any Chemsex service because there is nothing available in their area. This part of the community is not getting any help.
- Even though the big majority of people involved in Chemsex are men who have sex with men (MSM), there is no specialised support for transgender women and non-binary people who are experiencing problems with Chems, and they report that they don’t ask for help because they feel that what is available is only for MSM although they would access a service if they knew for sure that they were going to be understood. This part of the community is not getting any help.
- The use of Chems is increasing among straight men, many of them contacting female sex workers who are also using Chems, and they don’t feel that those services are for them either. These parts of the community are not getting any help.
- The majority of MSM involved in Chems connect with each other using Hook up apps such as Grindr but nobody until now has been providing professional outreach Chemsex support there, where they are.
- Based on an audit of information gaps, there are vital areas that people struggling with Chemsex continue to search but they find very difficult to find: Chemsex, the Police, and legal implications (what can you expect from the Police if you report a crime? Are the Police going to come if I call an ambulance because someone is at risk?); Chemsex and mental health (what is happening to me? How can I help someone who is experiencing psychosis?); Chemsex and First Aid (how to react when things go wrong in a chemsex scenario); practical tips about how to avoid unplanned sessions; how to use apps more safely, how to shorten sessions that are not fun anymore, etc.
CONTROLLING CHEMSEX believes that there is a desperate need for a new kind of intervention, to reinforce the support that is currently available.
OUR GOALS ARE:
- To support people to take control back if they feel they need support with Chemsex issues, helping them to improve the quality of their physical, mental and sexual health.
- To help reduce the chances of catching an STI.
- To facilitate the report and prosecution of sexual assaults and other crimes connected with Chemsex, and ultimately, to increase the safety and awareness of people’s rights such as consent, etc.
- To help to reduce the fatal consequences of overdoses.