Home > Chemsex: a case study of drug-userphobia

International Network of People who Use Drugs. (2019) Chemsex: a case study of drug-userphobia. London: INPUD. 24 p.

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Chemsex: an emerging term that refers to the use of certain drugs in the context of sex. It is a term associated with a number of communities of gay and bisexual men, the clubbing and club drug scenes, and the fetish and BDSM scenes though, of course, other communities can and do engage in chemsex. Specifically, it refers to sex that is accompanied, enhanced, and/or facilitated by drugs. As with all people who use drugs, people who engage in chemsex are diverse and heterogeneous.

Stigma, criminalisation, and social exclusion have resulted in poor understanding of chemsex, and of people who engage in chemsex. The media, government, or health systems rarely, if ever, engage with chemsex from the perspective of drug users’ rights. Instead, these institutions frequently position drug use and chemsex as problematic, as activities which are dangerous, harmful, and destructive in-and-of-themselves. In the context of chemsex, drug use is framed as threat to the community – whether the community at large or to LGBTQ communities – as this document demonstrates.

Item Type:Evidence resource
Drug Type:CNS stimulants, New psychoactive substance
Intervention Type:AOD disorder harm reduction
Pages:24 p.
Corporate Creators:International Network of People who Use Drugs
Place of Publication:London
Subjects:B Substances > CNS stimulants
B Substances > New (novel) psychoactive substances
J Health care, prevention and rehabilitation > Health related prevention > Health information and education > Communicable disease control > Safe sex
L Social psychology and related concepts > Social context
MA-ML Social science, culture and community > Sociocultural discrimination concepts > Prejudice (stigma / discrimination)
MM-MO Crime and law > Legal rights > Civil rights
MM-MO Crime and law > Legal rights > Rights of substance users
N Communication, information and education > Message (portrayal of substance use) > Portrayal of substance use in the media
T Demographic characteristics > Homosexual, gay, bisexual or lesbian, LGBTI
VA Geographic area > Europe > United Kingdom

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