Objectives. We examined the sexual and injection drug use HIV and AIDS risk behaviors of female jail detainees. Methods. The sample (n = 948) was stratified by charge type (felony vs misdemeanor) and race/ethnicity (African American, non-Hispanic White, Hispanic, other). Results. Non-Hispanic White women, women arrested for less serious charges, women who had prior arrests, women arrested on drug charges, and women with severe mental disorders were at especially high risk for sexual and injection drug transmission of HIV and AIDS. Conclusions. Many women at risk for HIV and AIDS - women who use drugs, women who trade sex for money or drugs, homeless women, and women with mental disorders - eventually will cycle through jail. Because most jail detainees return to their communities within days, providing HIV and AIDS education in jail must become a public health priority.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health