Online Program

HIV education in the criminal justice system and protective behaviors

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Stephanie Spohr, MA, School of Public Health, University of North Texas Health Science Center, Fort Worth, TX
Scott T. Walters, PhD, School of Public Health, Department of Health Behaviors and Health Systems, University of North Texas Health Science Center, Fort Worth, TX
Faye S. Taxman, PhD, Criminology, Law and Society, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA
background: The rate of HIV/AIDs in probationers is three times that of the general population. Criminal justice offenders often engage in risky behaviors that put them at risk for HIV infection (e.g., substance use, unprotected sex). methods: This study presents cross-sectional data regarding the association between HIV education (e.g., in-person, video, or written) received in the criminal justice system and subsequent HIV protective behaviors (e.g., condom use, HIV testing, and not using needle drugs). Data was drawn from 298 probationers in two large cities (Dallas, TX and Baltimore City, MD).  results: Chi-squared analyses indicated probationers who received any type of HIV education through their involvement in the criminal justice system were significantly more likely to have been tested for HIV in the previous 12 months than probationers who did not receive any education in the criminal justice system (χ2=9.48, p<.01). Receiving more than one type of education did not significantly improve HIV testing in the previous 12 months (χ2=0.46, p=.32). Probationers who received HIV education were also significantly more likely to report condom use in the previous 6 months (χ2=4.72, p<.05). No association was found between needle drug use and HIV education (χ2=1.61, p=.14). conclusion: These results indicate any type of HIV education within the criminal justice system can reduce HIV risk taking behaviors. Future researchers and policymakers should develop HIV educational interventions for offenders that can intervene in numerous stages of criminal justice involvement to reduce the risk of HIV/AIDs in this population.

Learning Areas:

Public health or related education
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
Describe the association of HIV educational programming delivered through the criminal justice system with engagement in HIV protective behaviors.

Keyword(s): HIV Risk Behavior

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am a PhD student in behavioral and community health studying addictive behaviors and motivational interviewing. I work primarily on a federally funded randomized controlled trial motivating probationers to initiate treatment. My other research focus has been on persuasive technologies. I am studying the use and efficacy of electronic reminders to initiate behavior change in drug involved probationers.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.