One way guys try to avoid picking up or passing on HIV, while not always using condoms, is by attempting to have sex with guys who have the same HIV status -“ either both negative or both positive. However, lots of guys get it wrong because sometimes you just don’t know.

ACON’s latest campaign is around this very issue -“ the You just don’t know campaign highlights the fact that many of us make mistakes when we guess or make assumptions about HIV status and we can all take action to reduce the times that this happens.

Research shows that one in five gay men who recently contracted HIV believed their sexual partner was HIV-negative. You Just Don’t Know reinforces that the use of condoms and lube with casual sex partners is still the best possible protection against HIV.

Keep an eye out for the new campaign and talk with friends about what it means to you.

In other news, Wollongong Area Gays (WAGS) have had a good month with their first STI awareness workshop for the year. Twenty people were in attendance and a number of interesting questions were raised with some lively discussion. Members also held an autumn barbecue. After some slight changes to format at the beginning of this year, WAGS is running well and has an active program planned for the rest of the year. Meetings are on the first and third Saturday of every month at ACON Illawarra from 6pm to 8pm.

There will also be an information session, Take Five, run by the Office of the Public Guardian at the Illawarra Branch from 6pm to 7:30pm on Thursday 8 May. This will cover topics such as persons making medical decisions on your behalf if you become incapacitated and how to appoint an enduring guardian. Plan for the future by coming along to this free information session. Contact Michael at the Illawarra Branch for more information and to RSVP.

Have fun and be safe.

If you require any additional information about groups, services, organisations in the Illawarra you can contact ACON Illawarra on 4226 1163 or contact Trevor on [email protected]

Trevor Slattery is the Education and Community Development Officer for ACON’s Illawarra Branch.

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