Racial Mixing and HIV Risk Among Men Who Have Sex with Men
- 580 Downloads
We conducted a cross-sectional survey of MSM using a time-location-sampling design in San Francisco during 2007–2008. The investigation focused on the selection of sexual partners, partner preferences, perceptions of HIV risk, and social mixing with respect to race/ethnicity. The sample of 1,142 MSM was 56% White, 22% Latino, 14% Asian, and 9% Black and reported on 3,532 sexual partnerships. Black MSM had a significant, three-fold higher level of same race sexual partnering than would be expected by chance alone (i.e., in the absence of selective forces with respect to race among partners). Black MSM were reported as the least preferred as sexual partners, believed at higher risk for HIV, counted less often among friends, were considered hardest to meet, and perceived as less welcome at the common venues that cater to gay men in San Francisco by other MSM. Our findings support the hypothesis that the sexual networks of Black MSM, constrained by the preferences and attitudes of non-Blacks and the social environment, are pushed to be more highly interconnected than other groups with the potential consequence of more rapid spread of HIV and a higher sustained prevalence of infection. The racial disparity in HIV observed for more than a decade will not disappear until the challenges posed by a legacy of racism towards Blacks in the US are addressed.
KeywordsRace/ethnicity HIV MSM Disparities Sexual mixing Sexual networks Social networks Social epidemiology
We wish to thank John Newsome for his thoughtful feedback to earlier versions of this manuscript.
- Bingham, T. A., Harawa, N. T., Johnson, D. F., Secura, G. M., MacKellar, D., & Valleroy, L. A. (2003). The effect of partner characteristics on HIV infection among African American men who have sex with men in the Young Men’s Survey, Los Angeles, 1999–2000. AIDS Education and Prevention, 15(Suppl. A), 39–52. doi: 10.1521/aeap.184.108.40.206.23613.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Bourdieu, P. (1986). The forms of capital. In J. Richardson (Ed.), Handbook of theory and research for the sociology of education. New York: Macmillan.Google Scholar
- Cary, D. (2007). Interracial marriages surge across U.S. http://www.usatoday.com/news/health/2007-04-12-interracial-marriage_n.html. Accessed 2 Jan 2009.
- CDC (2006). HIV/AIDS Surveillance Report. 13(1). http://www.cdc.gov/hiv/topics/surveillance/resources/reports/2008supp_vol13no1/default.htm. Accessed 6 Jan 2009.
- CDC. (2004). HIV transmission among black college student and non-student men who have sex with men—North Carolina, 2003. Morbidity Mortality Weekly Report, 53(32), 731–734.Google Scholar
- CDC. (2005). HIV prevalence, unrecognized infection and HIV testing among men who have sex with men—five U.S. cities. June 2004–April 2005. Morbidity Mortality Weekly Report, 54(24), 597–601.Google Scholar
- Harawa, N. T., Greenland, S., Bingham, T. A., Johnson, D. F., Cochran, S. D., Cunningham, W. E., et al. (2004). Associations of race/ethnicity with HIV prevalence and HIV-related behaviors among young men who have sex with men in 7 urban centers in the United States. Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes, 35(5), 526–536.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
- MacKellar, D., Gallagher, K. M., Finlayson, T., Sanchez, T., Lansky, A., & Sullivan, P. S. (2007). Surveillance of HIV risk and prevention behaviors of men who have sex with men—a national application of venue based, time-space sampling. Public Health Reports, 122(Suppl. 1), 39–47.PubMedGoogle Scholar
- San Francisco Department of Public Health (2004). San Francisco HIV prevention plan. http://www.sfhiv.org/files/plan_2004/2004_plan_ch_2.pdf. Accessed 6 Jan 2009.
- US Census Bureau (1998). Race of wife by race of husband: 1960, 1970, 1980, 1991, and 1992. http://www.2010census.biz/population/socdemo/race/interractab1.txt. Accessed 2 Jan 2009.