Introductory online course launched for LGBTQI+ Substance Use

22 September 2022

A free to access e-learning course on LGBTQI+ Substance Use has been launched by Scottish Drugs Forum in partnership with Glasgow Council on Alcohol, Kinder Stronger Better, and Glasgow City Health and Social Care Partnership.

This introductory e-learning course is aimed at people working in substance use and LGBTQI+ services. The course aims to increase knowledge and awareness of how LGBTQI+ people use substances, the health inequalities they experience, and the specific barriers they encounter when trying to get support.  By the end of this course, participants will know how to make their services more inclusive.    

A findings report from 2020 was commissioned by NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde (NHSGGC) and NHS Lothian which recognised that there are gaps in knowledge about the health and wellbeing of LGBT+ groups.  

Adrienne Hannah, Programme Manager at SDF said, “This e-learning resource has been developed to help drug and alcohol services become more welcoming and inclusive of LGBTQI+ people. Sadly, LGBTQI+ people experience stigma in many life situations and this can be particularly so when they need support around drug and alcohol use. If services can show LGBTQI+ people that they are providing non-judgemental, person-centred support then those people may begin to feel more able to access the services.”

The e-learning will provide workers with a more nuanced understanding of what LGBTQI+ people are experiencing when they require support. This course reveals what might prevent LGBTQI+ people from engaging in services, what specific health needs they might have, and the stigma they may have experienced during their life.   

Jemma Cassidy, Health Improvement Senior at Glasgow City Health and Social Care Partnership said, “We were excited to get involved in developing the e-learning because we want staff working in services to feel empowered by their newly acquired knowledge of how LGBTQI+ people use alcohol and drugs and use this learning to make their services more inclusive and improve the support they provide.”

Various people will benefit from the e-learning, including those who come into contact with people who use drugs, teachers, police, housing workers, social workers, mental health workers and the general public. 

Click here to access the course

SDF also offer a range of other free to access e-learning courses, which are available via the SDF training website. 

We are grateful to Katie Skinner our voiceover volunteer, Carol Emslie from the Research Centre for Health (ReaCH) at GCU for research, David Barbour from Glasgow Council and Alcohol, and Jemma Cassidy from the Glasgow City Health and Social Care Partnership who greatly assisted the course development with their expertise and talent.


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