THT has received millions of pounds from the Department of Health for work with gay and bisexual men as part of the CHAPS partnership.
My complaint is that it has either ignored or at best paid lip service to the "and bisexual" bit.
There's some history behind this, including the whole story of the initial impact of Aids in the UK, the successful use of the 'bisexual threat' to get government action, the consequences of that, and the 're-gaying of Aids' backlash. I'll write more about this at a later date.
When HIV prevention work with gay and bisexual men was dragged away from the Health Education Authority and CHAPS was created back in 1996, THT advertised for the post of bisexual men's health promotion officer alongside one for gay men.
To develop and implement appropriate HIV health promotion activities and resources to reach the wides range of bisexual men (including those who identify as bisexual and those who do not) …
- To develop and support campaigning activities to ensure quality HIV health promotion for self-identified and non-identified bisexual men.
- To review the current provision of HIV health promotion for bisexual men and identify unmet needs in collaboration iwith the CHAPS team and partner agencies.
- To develop appropriate activities, resources and dissemination mechanisms for HIV health promotion for bisexual men.
- To deliver bisexual men's health promotion campaigns in collaboration with other members of THT's CHAPS team, other THT staff, volunteers, CHAPS partners and other voluntary or statutory organisations.
- [develop appropriate volunteer groups]
- To ensure that THT's HIV health promotion work is responsive to the needs of those most at risk and reflects the cultural diversity of bisexual men.
- [ensure it reaches black and ethnic minority men]
- [monitor budgets]
- [stay up to date in the field]
- [promote and adhere to THT policies]
- To carry out any other reasonable duties.
I believe that was the last time the issue was treated seriously.
Two people were interviewed for the bisexual men's post, neither was appointed, and the results can be seen today.