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Digital Subscriptions > GCN > 356 > AS ONE DOOR CLOSES

AS ONE DOOR CLOSES

Continuing in its 27th year as the only statutory Public Health Service in Ireland for gay and bisexual men, MSM (Men who have Sex with Men) and the trans community, the Gay Men’s Health Service will this month close its familiar Baggot Street clinic and move to a new home on Heytesbury Street in Dublin 8. But while the location may change, the dedication of the team and the quality of service will remain. Brian Teeling captured final images of the clinic which has facilitated over 110,000 patient visits.

For the LGBT+ community, the Ireland of 1992 was a very different place to how it is now, most obviously, homosexuality was still criminalised, with many compelled to keep their sexuality a secret. Services that openly catered to the sexual health of MSM were non-existent, so the mere fact that a clinic then calling itself the Gay Men’s Health Project would open a full nine months before decriminalisation took place was rather revolutionary.

A few years before, the Eastern Health Board had set up the AIDS Resource Centre in response to an increase in HIV/ AIDS and heroin use. Among its services, the Centre provided a HIV testing only drop-in centre which was also used by many gay and bisexual men. Spurred by this knowledge, in 1991, Mick Quinlan and David Wyse, two outreach workers from drugs/ AIDS services, carried out a survey across Dublin’s gay bars, clubs and saunas on the sexual health needs of MSM. From the results of their findings, the Eastern Health Board established the Gay Men’s Health Project.

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About GCN

Welcome to our continued celebration of Pride across this beautiful country. The organisers of Pride festivals yet to happen explain what we can expect. There’s a report from Black Pride in London and a photo essay capturing events at Dublin Pride, Trans Pride and Alternative Pride. Inside, we look at Love Sensation – the new queer music and arts festival, and explore the GAZE Film Festival and its opening night film - Deep In Vogue. GCN celebrates 20 years of the incredible LINC, and the Gay Men's Health Service moves to a new location. There's an interview with the delightfully original painter Delmas Howe while The Diceman gets a touching feature looking at his enduring legacy. The community share their stories on the truth behind transitioning in Ireland, finding the courage to openly embrace their sexuality after leaving home and a HIV Positive activist speaks about improving access to sexual health services. For the second issue in a row, we happily and wholeheartedly say – Happy Pride everyone.