In memoriam: Timothy Moore, 1964–2014

In memoriam: Timothy Moore, 1964–2014

HIV Australia | Vol. 13 No. 1 | April 2015

By Tim Leach and Lou McCallum

Timothy Moore was the author of many of Australia’s best policy responses to the challenge of reducing HIV-related and other harms associated with drug use.

His work reflected his deep commitment to HIV responses rooted in the human rights of people affected by the virus, particularly people who inject drugs. It was evidence-based (he was a scientist in a former life).

It was grounded in community, being based on the experiences and advice of countless drug users and their representatives, particularly AIVL (the Australian Injecting and Illicit Drug Users League).

It was creative and ground breaking. He could make complex issues seem simple.

As AFAO Policy Analyst from 1995 to 2002, Timothy made an incredibly important contribution to AFAO’s work. And he did so at a critical time.

While governments had begun by then to understand that involving gay men and HIV-positive people in the response might actually strengthen public health outcomes, there remained trenchant opposition to the involvement of people who inject drugs.

Timothy responded with facts, reason and an enduring calm.
Timothy was part of a close-knit AFAO policy team that included Alan Brotherton, Susie McLean, Chris Ward and the late Geoffrey Fysh.

It was quite the team. It provided critically important leadership for AFAO members across the country, and its work continues to be reflected in many contemporary policy responses, not just those of AFAO but of governments, agencies and other stakeholders across the sector.

Timothy represented AFAO on the National Expert Advisory Committee on Illicit Drugs, which drafted the National Illicit Drug Action Plan (2000).

His work was recognised beyond Australia and in 2000 he presented a paper at the International Conference on the Reduction of Drug Related Harm, entitled ‘The centrality of drug users in a harm reduction response’.

Timothy’s efforts extended beyond drugs policy. He undertook important policy work in relation to research and government health funding; few people could track health spending through complex inter-governmental funding processes like Timothy – he was forensic. He co-wrote (with Gary Lee) AFAO’s 1998 National Indigenous Gay and Transgender Project Sexual Health Strategy.

This was the first strategy of its kind and helped lay the foundations for a decade of subsequent policy responses to the HIV and related needs of Indigenous gay men and sistergirls.

His commitment to the health and other rights of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders was apparent then and it is no surprise he went on to pursue these rights through a decade-long role with the Victorian Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (VACCHO).

Timothy also worked as a Drug Policy Project Officer at Redfern Legal Centre from 1998–2002, and assisted in the development of Really Positive, an important series of resources for people who inject drugs developed by NUAA (NSW Users and AIDS Association) and AIVL.Timothy died in December 2014. He is fondly remembered by his colleagues.

We are reminded of his impressive body of work. We remember that he was a really lovely man.

Tim Leach was Deputy Director of AFAO 1996–2001.

Lou McCallum was Executive Director of AFAO from 1996–1998.