Media Statement: The National Drug Strategy Household Survey 2019 Key Findings

While there are some signs of improvement for lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) people since 2010 there is still work to be done.

The National LGBTI Health Alliance (the Alliance), the national peak health organisation in Australia for organisations and individuals that provide health-related programs, services and research focused on lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex people (LGBTI) welcomes the launch of Australian Institute of Health and Welfare’s National Drug Strategy Household Survey 2019 report acknowledging that while there are some signs of improvement for lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) people since 2010 there is still work to be done.

Nicky Bath, CEO of the Alliance has said that while a reduction in smoking and drinking for lesbian, gay and bisexual people since 2010 is encouraging, it is disappointing that these communities are still 1.5 times as likely to smoke daily, and 1.5 more likely to exceed lifetime risk guidelines from alcohol than their heterosexual counterparts.

“Unfortunately, we have not seen a marked reduction in illicit drug use over the same period. Our objective is to reduce barriers to accessing accurate information and safe and appropriate health services, while increasing access and availability to counselling and peer driven community social support and targeted community-controlled health and harm reduction initiatives and programs.”

“The National Drug Strategy 2017-2026 rightly recognises people identifying as gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and/or intersex as priority populations.  It is vital that the words on the pages of the Strategy translate into tangible actions that will make a real difference.” Nicky Bath concluded.

The Alliance notes the National Drug Strategy Household survey collects data on people who identified as gay, lesbian or bisexual and while this is most welcome, we ask that in future surveys that indicators are included that capture information on people who are trans and gender diverse and intersex people. 

Media Contact:  Nicky Bath, Chief Executive Officer
Mobile: 0432 328 706
Email: Nicky.bath@lgbtihealth.org.au

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ABOUT THE ALLIANCE
The National LGBTI Health Alliance is the national peak health organisation in Australia for organisations and individuals that provide health-related programs, services and research focused on lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex people and other sexuality and gender diverse (LGBTI) people and communities.
ACKNOWLEDGEMENT OF COUNTRY
The Alliance acknowledges the Traditional Owners of country throughout Australia, their diversity, histories and knowledge and their continuing connections to land and community. We pay our respects to all Australian Indigenous Peoples and their cultures, and to Elders of past, present and future generations.