Just a brief request from us to the world-at-large, primarily with the aim of making our users lives a little easier. Secondarily, it'd also make the lives of those of us who work to help them daily in these areas easier, too, which would sure be nice.
Please do us and everyone else a favor and stop using certain words with very specific meanings as general shorthand.
UPDATE! We -- and you! -- did it! WE SO TOTALLY DID IT! We met the minimum goal we needed to to avoid a strike and having to shut down any of our services. We can't thank the 1,000+ of you enough who have helped us do this, and who have made it possible for all the young people who need and use our services to keep on using them without interruption.
In September of 2012, openly gay footy player Jason Ball started a change.org petition calling on the AFL (Australian Football League, for all you non-Aussies out there) to air anti-homophobia videos during their grand final. They agreed to show the ads from No To Homophobia during the preliminary finals, and since then, Jason has kept very busy speaking to new AFL players about homophobia in sport, becoming an ambassador for national mental health organization Beyond Blue, and leading the 18th Pride March Victoria through Melbourne with his teammates.
Patsy Niklas is someone I consider myself privileged to know in person. Until recently, she worked as the program manager for YEAH (Youth Empowerment Against HIV/AIDS) in Melbourne, coordinating volunteer training and taking care of the organisation's social media.
Now she works with the Foundation for Young Australians on their Young People Without Borders project, helping young Australians get involved in volunteering and activism. In addition to all that, she hosts a weekly show about sex and relationships on Melbourne's youth-run radio station, SYN.
My partner at the time — I’m still with him — offered to get tested for STIs before our first meeting in person.
I turned him down.
I think I must have decided that he didn't have an STI.
Someone told me once that I was more powerful than electricity. If that is true, which I highly doubt it is, I must be truly powerful indeed, to conduct blood and urine analyses over the phone or Internet, and with no scientific or medical training at that!