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What’s gay men’s relationship with drugs? The Global Drug Survey 2015 wants to hear from you

By Will Stroude

gds-2015-slimAs a media partner for the Global Drugs Survey 2015, Attitude will be publishing the study’s results early next year. But first, they want to hear from you guys…

Last year almost 80,000 people from around the world shared their experience and expertise with Global Drug Survey (GDS)  by participating in GDS2014. Our findings were reported around the world and reached over 1 billion people. About one third of our respondents were women. Typically the world of research, drug treatment and media commentary ignores the issue of gay men’s drug use outside the link with high risk sexual behaviours, chem sex orgies and G overdoses.

Like much research into drug both academics, health providers and the media focus on drug-related risk and harm. We see little that talks functionally and objectively about gay men and the way they use drugs or alcohol as part of a wider lifestyle outside the fairly narrow world that attracts the media’s attention. And yet gay men like gay women, straight men and women get drunk, get high and do so without ruining their life.


However because their choice of drugs and the settings that they are sometimes used within it is true to say that they may be more vulnerable to harms – sometimes because they often delay seeking treatment because of issues related to stigma and shame. So this year GDS has partnered with two of the biggest gay men’s media organisations in the UK Pink News and Attitude as well a host of other global media giants to undertake the biggest survey of drug use drug use ever conducted. At a time of unprecedented change in the world of drugs we need to better understand what people are using and why.

Translated into 10 languages with partners in 20 countries we hope to engage over 120,000 people in #GDS2015. So we need your help. We will explore the notion that many people use drugs without any great problems and that gender equality has expanded its reach to the use of drinks and. With the rise in novel psychoactive drugs and the dark-net continuing to steal headlines and policy attention GDS will not only ensure that accurate data on these issues is shared but that we do not lose sight of the real big players namely alcohol, tobacco products and prescription drugs.

We will also conduct the world biggest ever assessment of cognitive and performance / image enhancing drugs (steroids and weight loss agents).   And of course we will compare drug prices around the world, tell you how much the average gay man and woman in the world needs to drink to be as ‘happily drunk’ as they can be and answer the question ‘do gay vegetarians use less drugs than other people?’  Objective, independent and informed, GDS brings together leading experts to ask you questions about drugs and alcohol so together we can help make a difference to the way people talk about drugs, think about drugs and use them. As always our results will be published exclusively with our global media partners in June 2015.

Take part in Global Drug Survey 2015, launching November 10 at Everything is anonymous and confidential. Please take the time to share your experience anytime up until December 20 2014.