safer sex


Andrew B urnet reports on a new Seottish projeet designed to keep AIDS-axx areness in the public eye.

'i'here xx as a time xx hen _xou eouldn‘t open a dail_x' paperorehange ehannelsori x'our‘ telex‘isiori xxithout being eonl'ronted xxith something about AIDS. '1 rue to lorm. eertain branehes ol the press xx ere less than helplul. spreading misintormation and entrenehingoutmoded preitltiiees. but there \x as no eseaping the laet that AIDS prex'ention xx as on the agenda.

Noxx adax's. txxo problems laee those tr‘_x ing to publieise the risks in a eountrx xx here i ll\' l the x irus xx hieh eauses AlDS ) still seems to be spreading l 3" nexx eases ol ill\' inleetion xx ere reported in Seotland betxxeen l .lqu and 3t) September). 'l'he lirst is to undermine the misleading mx ths xx ltieh hax‘e been spread b_x‘ ignorant reporting. and bx alarmist rumours.

'l'he seeond is more tliornx. AlDS just isn't ‘s‘ex_x" nexx’s an_x more: that's to sax that in iour'nalistie terms it has lost its l'reslrness. All the angles hax‘e been eox ered readers arid x iexx ers dietate that thex xx ant to hear about something else noxx.

As media eox e rage drops. so eomplaeenex rises. and xx ith it the danger ol inleetion. Add to this the problem ol teenagers noxx rnakrng their lir‘st experiments xx ith sex. untouehed bx the blanket publieitx xx hieh existed txxo or three xears ago. and the problems ol getting the Saler' Sex nle\\;lge tiel‘oss beeome apparent.

i’ridax’ i Deeeriiber is the seeond




\Vorld AiDS Dax. last _x'ear'. Ameriean lamilies marked the da_\

xx itlt a huge patehxxork truilt oi panels. one made in memorx ol eaeh ol the staggering ll .llllllpeople to

ii;l\ e died oi the disease in the Siltle‘S.

'l‘his xear in Seotland the dax xx ill see the oliieial launeh ol the Salei' Sex Roadshoxx . a nexx initiatix e bx Seottish .'\ii).S \ionllol‘. designed to reaeh _xoung people in an exeeatehing and stimulating xx‘ax.

'iiihel'eis been a lot oi interest. so xx e‘re going to be r'eallx busx .' saxs i.iarit ( iiilespie. the Roadshoxx 's Manager. "i'he reaetron xx‘e‘x e had lrom people alter telling them exaetlx xx hat xx e‘re doing has been reallx good. and thex think it‘s a good idea. so it's reallx rust a ease ol trx iiig to lit ex er_\ bodx in. i mean xx e'i'e not going to hax e to go out and trx to get in somexx here. beeause there are so manx people interested in takiiigit.~

'l’he Saler Sex Roadshoxx . as its name suggests. is a trax elling audio-x isual laeilitx . xx hieh ean be


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tailored to lit dil’lerent eireumstanees

and x entres. Some parts til it are targeted speeil'ieallx' at the gax or heterosexual seetors. and ean be omitted where either is tell to be inappropriate. 'l‘he gax‘ ntaterial is. gener'allx' speaking. the more explieit. though (iiiiespie stresses that none oi the material can al'l’or'd to be ox‘er-delieate. "lhe language is quite straightlorxxar'd.‘ he sax's. ‘beeause il _x‘ou trx to be too sale xou‘re not going to get the point Llet‘oss.‘

the material takes x‘arious l'orms. ‘l‘liere are displax boards earrx'ing ex e-eatehing. xx ittilx' assembled eollages. inlor'mationon sale praetiees and ignorable m_x tits. and posters in xx hieh pop or lilrn stars endorse saler sex messages. i'here i\ a displax proxided bx l‘rontliners. the sell-help group ol people xx ith AlDSor' AlDS-Related-(‘ornplex. \xliieli(iillespie deseribesas ‘the humanist side or it that it ean happen to anx'bodx .'

. p .mk‘f'

'l'here are also x ideos lrom a x'ar‘ietx' ol sotirees. ineluding some Danish telex ision adxei'tisements.

xx hieh. aeeording to ( iillespie. are ‘quite humorous”. 'l'rained eounsellors xx ill alxx a_xs be in attendanee. r‘eadx to oiiel' iitlormation and adx'iee on a one-to-one looting. \\ hieh has been among the most ei l'eetix e methods of breaking doxx n r‘esistanee to the Saler Sex message.

'\\'e took ptll'ts oi the Roadshoxx out to i’resher‘s i‘airs xx hen the nexx students xx ere starting.’ sa_xs (iillespie. ‘and it xxas lunnx at lirst -— they tended to look at our dispiax and sort ol rush past. I don't think people like to be the one to eome up. 'l‘hex think “oh. nix triends might think it’s going to al'leet me” or something. But it xou approaeli them and hand them a leallet. then thex' relax. and il' _x‘otr ean ehat and get a lighl—heartedness to start xx ith

then it‘s okax'. You earrt be too lieax'x' and serious at l'irst. ll _\in1 ean get them to take a leallet. thex' ean read that later and get the laets.‘

Despite ex'idenee or growing public i'esistanee to printed publieitx material. leai‘lets plax a x'er_x signil'ieant part in S.-\.\i’s edueational eampaign. and a large numberol‘designs are ax ailable. eox er'ing dil'l'erent areas ol' the problem in dillerent xx ax's. Among the most sueeessl'ul haxe used eartoon l'ormats: one ol’ these is again imported l'i‘om Denmark (its

mixed-sex sauna seene max raise a

iexx‘ exebroxx'sf l but like much ol'

SAM‘s most elieetix e material it

places the emphasis on inn. and is unlikelx to alienate ex en the most eynieal reader.

'i'he Sal‘er Sex Roadshoxx is

unlikelx tostart touring in earnest

until .lanuar'x. though its launeh on World AIDS Dax should gix‘e it a good kiek-start. ' l'his dax ~s x'er'x important] slix‘s ( iiilespie. ‘rust to raise axx'areness. it's a reminder that AIDS is still there it's a tear that seems to hax e been put axxax' in some

people and thex iust don‘t seem to

realise that it ean erop tip at anx' time.'

Contacts I NationalAIDS Helpline

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Six Golden Rules

I Always use a condom tor penetratix e sex. l'se it aeeor drug to the instruetions and (mix

I Useawater-based spermicidal lubricanttoo it helpspiexent eondoms tromsplitting. and proxidesextra proteetion against botlt pregnanex and AIDS Sortte eondomsteg Durex lzxtra Sale l are alieadx treated xxitlispermieidal

I Ilyou injectdrugs. NEVER share needles More

titan halt lite l ll\¥posrtix e i‘illt‘xi le\l\ \ti Lil reeorded in Seotland xx er e among 'lntraxeiious Drug \iisuseis'

I Don'tgetcarriedaway whenyou‘re drunk it xou‘re hoping tor sex. ear r'x aitd


ITake condoms on holiday .-\ signirreant proportion ol Seottish lll\' mleetions look piaee abroad.

I Don‘tbelieveidle rumours \‘ou ean't eateh AlDS trorn normal soeial eontaet.sxximmingpools, laxatorx seats. kissing. ear‘essing or sharing drinks. You don't haxe to be proriiisetious. ga_x or addicted to heroin to beeome rnleeted xx ith lll\'. It ean happen to anxone xx ho isn‘teareiul.