ACT reaches out to men who bareback

Published: May 27, 2011

Rather than condemning barebacking, the AIDS Committee of Toronto (ACT) is offering harm-reduction information in its condom kits.
 
 ACT’s position is that condoms are always the best choice, says Andrew Brett, communications coordinator at ACT. Even so, it’s important to acknowledge the reality, which is that some people don’t use condoms.
 
“People will make their own choices about sex, so it’s best they have the tools to make sex safer,” he says.
 
The condom package reads, “It’s your choice. We recognize that sex is a spectrum of possibilities. From pig sex to vanilla. Barebacking to wrapped.”
 
One gay man who took a free condom from an ACT volunteer at the Inside Out Film Festival reacted later with anger on Facebook, calling the message “appalling” and “morally despicable.”

But there’s no point ignoring that barebacking exists, Brett says. It’s better to discuss it and raise awareness about all preventive strategies.
 
“People are going to have sex, and it’s their choice in whatever sex they have,” he says. “If someone is going to have bareback sex, there’s nothing we can say that is going to stop them. We still have information for them to make it safer.”

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