AIDS and Behavior

, Volume 21, Issue 3, pp 734–744

Food Insecurity Increases HIV Risk Among Young Sex Workers in Metro Vancouver, Canada

  • Daniella Barreto
  • Kate Shannon
  • Chrissy Taylor
  • Sabina Dobrer
  • Jessica St. Jean
  • Shira M. Goldenberg
  • Putu Duff
  • Kathleen N. Deering
Original Paper

DOI: 10.1007/s10461-016-1558-8

Cite this article as:
Barreto, D., Shannon, K., Taylor, C. et al. AIDS Behav (2017) 21: 734. doi:10.1007/s10461-016-1558-8

Abstract

This research aimed to determine the effect of food insecurity on sexual HIV risk with clients among youth sex workers (YSWs) <30 years in Metro Vancouver, Canada. Data were drawn from a prospective community cohort of sex workers (2010–2013). We examined the independent relationship between YSWs’ food insecurity and being pressured into sex without a condom by clients (“client condom refusal”). Of 220 YSWs, 34.5 % (n = 76) reported client condom refusal over the 3.5-year study period and 76.4 % (n = 168) reported any food insecurity. Adjusting for other HIV risk pathways, food insecurity retained an independent effect on client condom refusal (AOR 2.08, 95 % CI 1.23–3.51), suggesting that food insecurity is significantly associated with HIV risk among YSWs. This study indicates a critical relationship between food insecurity and HIV risk, and demonstrates YSWs’ particular vulnerability. Public policies for food assistance as a harm reduction measure may be key to addressing this disparity.

Keywords

Sex work Youth HIV Food insecurity 

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Daniella Barreto
    • 1
    • 2
  • Kate Shannon
    • 1
    • 3
  • Chrissy Taylor
    • 1
  • Sabina Dobrer
    • 1
  • Jessica St. Jean
    • 2
  • Shira M. Goldenberg
    • 1
    • 4
  • Putu Duff
    • 1
    • 3
  • Kathleen N. Deering
    • 1
    • 3
  1. 1.BC Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDSSt. Paul’s HospitalVancouverCanada
  2. 2.YouthCO HIV & Hep C SocietyVancouverCanada
  3. 3.Department of MedicineUniversity of British ColumbiaVancouverCanada
  4. 4.Faculty of Health SciencesSimon Fraser UniversityBurnabyCanada

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