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Title: Bang and bust: almost everything you wanted to know about sex and the mining boom (but were afraid to ask)
Contributor(s): Scott, John  (author)orcid ; MacPhail, Catherine  (author)orcid ; Minichiello, Victor  (author)
Publication Date: 2012
DOI: 10.1071/PVv2012n160p26
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Abstract: Recent growth and expansion of the fly-in/fly-out (FIFO) model of mining in remote rural Australia has led to concerns about the health and well-being of those employed by the mines and those in the small rural communities where they are based. A particular concern has been the potential disruption to sexual norms in mining towns and increases in sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and HIV. In May this year it was widely reported that AMA Queensland President, Dr Richard Kidd, had cited 'bored and cashed-up' workers to blame for increasing rates of STIs in mining communities. Kidd is not a lone voice, with the Queensland Health Minister, Lawrence Springborg, blaming sex workers operating in mining regions for rising rates of HIV in his state. That clients, whether the mine (as opposed to sex) workers or men in the community are not mentioned in these stories is interesting, but perhaps another story. The Australian Sex Workers Association responded strongly to these claims, arguing that sex work in Australia is well regulated and that unprotected sex is more likely to occur in non-commercial encounters. Sex industry advocates have claimed that FIFO sex workers can be enlisted via appropriate public health interventions to be part of the solution for decreasing rates of STIs and HIV, rather than being part of the problem. Janelle Fawkes of the Scarlet Alliance observed that 'sex workers ... have positive effects on local communities where we bring safe sex education and skills'. This paper contextualises the debate by providing an overview of the sex industry in rural and regional areas where mining booms are currently underway.
Publication Type: Journal Article
Source of Publication: Preview (160), p. 26-31
Publisher: CSIRO Publishing
Place of Publication: Melbourne, Australia
ISSN: 1836-084X
Field of Research (FOR): 111712 Health Promotion
111706 Epidemiology
111799 Public Health and Health Services not elsewhere classified
HERDC Category Description: C3 Non-Refereed Article in a Professional Journal
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