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While HIV/AIDS and sexual health have been the primary focus of LGBT communities for the past few decades, as medical progress in HIV treatment has been made over the years, attention has been shifting toward other areas of health.

Journalist Michael Hobbes claims there’s a new epidemic to address.

In his article “Together Alone: The Epidemic of Gay Loneliness”, published on March 2 in Huffington Post’s Highline magazine, Hobbes explores the connection of loneliness to a variety of issues, including the experience of being closeted, drug usage, hookups, minority stress, anxiety and depression, suicide, and more.

It clearly hit a nerve.

The article went viral, and several other articles followed in its wake. Slate published two articles that offered alternate viewpoints, including Ben Miller’s criticism of Hobbes’s article and Brian Salfas’ critique of how Hobbes references studies in his article.

Vancouverites will have a chance to attend a community discussion about Hobbes’ article when the writer himself attends a panel discussion presented by UBC’s Men’s Health Research and Health Initiative for Men (HIM).

Men’s Health Research’s Olivier Ferlatte will moderate a panel, which will include Hobbes, former UBC social work professor Brian O’Neil, registered clinical counsellor and HIM program manager Aaron Purdie, and BC Centre for Disease Control’s Travis Salway (who was an interviewee in Hobbes’ article).

The event, Together Alone, will be held at XY (1216 Bute Street) from 6:30 to 8 p.m. on June 8. Admission is free but donations will be accepted for HIM and Still Here, a project designed to address suicide among LGBT people.

For more information, visit the event webpage on Facebook.

Author: Craig Takeuchi

Source: http://www.straight.com/blogra/916371/vancouver-lgbt-community-discussion-address-gay-male-loneliness