Kathleen N Deering

St. Paul's Hospital, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada

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Publications (31)91.55 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: We conducted a systematic review in June 2012 (updated September 2013) to examine the prevalence and factors shaping sexual or physical violence against sex workers globally. We identified 1536 (update = 340) unique articles. We included 28 studies, with 14 more contributing to violence prevalence estimates. Lifetime prevalence of any or combined workplace violence ranged from 45% to 75% and over the past year, 32% to 55%. Growing research links contextual factors with violence against sex workers, alongside known interpersonal and individual risks. This high burden of violence against sex workers globally and large gaps in epidemiological data support the need for research and structural interventions to better document and respond to the contextual factors shaping this violence. Measurement and methodological innovation, in partnership with sex work communities, are critical. (Am J Public Health. Published online ahead of print March 13, 2014: e1-e13. doi:10.2105/AJPH.2014.301909).
    American Journal of Public Health 03/2014; · 3.93 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: This article reviews the current state of the epidemiological literature on female sex work and HIV from the past 18 months. We offer a conceptual framework for structural HIV determinants and sex work that unpacks intersecting structural, interpersonal, and individual biological and behavioural factors. Our review suggests that despite the heavy HIV burden among female sex workers (FSWs) globally, data on the structural determinants shaping HIV transmission dynamics have only begun to emerge. Emerging research suggests that factors operating at macrostructural (e.g., migration, stigma, criminalized laws), community organization (e.g., empowerment) and work environment levels (e.g., violence, policing, access to condoms HIV testing, HAART) act dynamically with interpersonal (e.g., dyad factors, sexual networks) and individual biological and behavioural factors to confer risks or protections for HIV transmission in female sex work. Future research should be guided by a Structural HIV Determinants Framework to better elucidate the complex and iterative effects of structural determinants with interpersonal and individual biological and behavioural factors on HIV transmission pathways among FSWs, and meet critical gaps in optimal access to HIV prevention, treatment, and care for FSWs globally.
    Current opinion in HIV and AIDS 01/2014; · 4.75 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Clients of female sex workers (FSWs) are an important bridging population for HIV and other sexually transmitted infections. However, the extent of risk to female noncommercial partners (NCPs) of clients has not been explored. Data originated from a cross-sectional behavioral and biological survey of FSW clients from 5 districts in Karnataka state, southern India. Clients were classified into 3 groups: married, single with at least 1 NCP, and single without an NCP. Bivariate and multivariable logistic regression models were constructed to examine the association between group membership and condom use patterns with FSWs and, where applicable, NCPs. HIV, herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV-2), and other sexually transmitted infections were examined. Normalized weights were used to account for a complex sampling design. Most respondents in our sample (n = 2328) were married (61%). Compared with single respondents without an NCP, married clients were more likely to never use condoms with both occasional (adjusted odds ratio [AOR], 1.8; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.3-2.5; P < 0.0001) and regular (AOR, 1.7; 95% CI, 1.1-2.6; P = 0.015) FSWs. Among clients with an NCP, married clients were at higher odds of never using a condom with their NCP (AOR, 5.5; 95% CI, 3.7-8.1; P < 0.0001). Overall prevalence for HIV, HSV-2, syphilis, and chlamydia or gonorrhea infection was 5.7%, 28.3%, 3.6%, and 2.1%, respectively. The prevalence of HSV-2 was 37%, 16%, and 19% among those who were married, those single without an NCP, and those single with an NCP, respectively. Married respondents were least likely to use condoms with both commercial and noncommercial sexual partners, while also having the highest prevalence of HSV-2. These results illustrate the risk posed to both commercial partners and NCPs of married clients.
    Sexually transmitted diseases 06/2013; 40(6):482-9. · 2.58 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: OBJECTIVE:: Among sex workers (SWs) in Vancouver, Canada, this study identified social, drug use, sex work, environmental-structural and client-related factors associated with being offered and accepting more money after clients' demand for sex without a condom. DESIGN:: Cross-sectional study using baseline (February/10-October/11) data from a longitudinal cohort of 510 SWs. METHODS:: A two-part multivariable regression model was used to identify factors associated with two separate outcomes: (1) being offered and (2) accepting more money for sex without a condom in the last six months, among those who had been offered more money. RESULTS:: The sample included 490 SWs. In multivariable analysis, being offered more money for sex without a condom was more likely for SWs who used speedballs, had higher average numbers of clients per week, had difficulty accessing condoms and had clients who visited other SWs. Accepting more money for sex without a condom was more likely for SWs self-reporting as a sexual minority and who had experienced client violence and used crystal methamphetamine use less than daily (vs. none), and less likely for SWs who solicited for clients mainly indoors (vs. outdoor/public places). CONCLUSIONS:: These results highlight the high demand for sex without a condom by clients of SWs. HIV prevention efforts should shift responsibility toward clients to reduce offers of more money for unsafe sex. Programs that mitigate the social and economic risk environments of SWs alongside the removal of criminal sanctions on sex work to enable condom use within safer indoor work spaces are urgently required.
    JAIDS Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes 04/2013; · 4.65 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: OBJECTIVE:: Estimate the potential impact of Avahan, the India AIDS Initiative, among female sex workers(FSWs) and their clients in five districts of Karnataka state, South India. DESIGN:: Examination of time trends in sexually transmitted infection(STI)/HIV prevalence from serial cross-sectional surveys, combined with mathematical modelling. METHODS:: Survey data from each district were used to monitor changes in FSW STI/HIV prevalence during Avahan. A deterministic model, parameterized with district-specific survey data, was used to simulate HIV/HSV-2/syphilis transmission among high-risk groups in each district. Latin hypercube sampling was used to obtain multiple parameter sets that reproduced district-specific HIV prevalence trends. A Bayesian framework tested whether self-reported increases in consistent condom use(CCU) during Avahan were more compatible with FSW HIV prevalence trends than assuming no or slow (pre-intervention rates) CCU increases, and were used to estimate HIV incidence and infections averted. RESULTS:: Declines in FSW HIV prevalence occurred over 5 years in all districts, and were statistically significant in three. Self-reported increases in CCU were more consistent with observed declines in HIV prevalence in three districts. In all five districts, an estimated 25-64% (32-70%) HIV infections were averted among FSWs (clients) over 5 years. This corresponded to 142-2092 FSW infections averted depending on the district (2-9-fold more among clients). CONCLUSIONS:: Empirical HIV prevalence trends combined with Bayesian modelling has provided plausible evidence that Avahan has reduced HIV transmission among FSWs and their clients. If current CCU levels are sustained, FSW HIV prevalence could decline to low levels by 2015, with many more infections averted.
    AIDS (London, England) 03/2013; · 4.91 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: This study characterized the type and frequency of violence against female sex workers (FSWs) perpetrated by their clients and their main intimate or other nonpaying partner (NPP) and examined the relationship between violence and inconsistent condom use (ICU, G100%). The factors associated with client violence were also assessed. Data were analyzed from cross-sectional surveys of FSWs in Karnataka state (2007-2008), India. Multivariable logistic regression was used to assess the following: (1) relationship between client or NPP violence (physical and/or sexual) and ICU by occasional/repeat clients or the NPP and (2) relationship between social and environmental factors and client violence. Of 1219 FSWs, 9.6% (111) and 3.7% (42) reported experiencing violence by clients and the NPP, respectively. In multivariable analysis, after adjusting for social and environmental factors, the odds of ICU by occasional clients were significantly higher for women who had experienced client violence (adjusted odds ratio [AOR], 2.7; 95% confidence interval (CI), 1.6-4.4). Similar results were found with repeat clients (AOR, 2.2; 95% CI, 1.4-3.4). Nonpaying partner violence was not significantly associated with ICU by the NPP. In multivariable analysis, only being recently arrested remained significantly associated with experiencing client violence (AOR, 1.8; 95% CIs, 1.0-3.3). The findings from this study provide evidence of a relationship between experiencing client violence and ICU by occasional and repeat clients, and a relationship between being arrested and client violence. Comprehensive structural/policy programming for FSWs, including within HIV-focused prevention programs, is urgently needed to help reduce FSWs' vulnerability to violence
    Sexually transmitted diseases 02/2013; 40(2):168-74. · 2.58 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Background Employing innovative mapping and spatial analyses of individual and neighborhood environment data, we examined the social, physical and structural features of overlapping street-based sex work and drug scenes and explored the utility of a ‘spatial isolation index’ in explaining exchanging sex for drugs and exchanging sex while high. Methods Analyses drew on baseline interview and geographic data (Jan/10-Oct/11) from a large prospective cohort of street and off-street sex workers (SWs) in Metropolitan Vancouver and external publically-available, neighborhood environment data. An index measuring ‘spatial isolation’ was developed from seven indicators measuring features of the built environment within 50 m buffers (e.g. industrial or commercial zoning, lighting) surrounding sex work environments. Bivariate and multivariable logistic regression was used to examine associations between the two outcomes (exchanged sex for drugs; exchanged sex while high) and the index, as well as each individual indicator. Results Of 510 SWs, 328 worked in street-based/outdoor environments (e.g. streets, parks, alleys) and were included in the analyses. In multivariable analysis, increased spatial isolation surrounding street-based/outdoor SWs’ main places of servicing clients as measured with the index was significantly associated with exchanging sex for drugs. Exchanging sex for drugs was also significantly positively associated with an indicator of the built environment suggesting greater spatial isolation (increased percent of parks) and negatively associated with those suggesting decreased spatial isolation (increased percent commercial areas, increased count of lighting, increased building footprint). Exchanging sex while high was negatively associated with increased percent of commercial zones but this association was removed when adjusting for police harassment. Conclusions The results from our exploratory study highlight how built environment shapes risks within overlapping street-based sex work and drug scenes through the development of a novel index comprised of multiple indicators of the built environment available through publicly available data, This study informs the important role that spatially-oriented responses, such as safer-environment interventions, and structural responses, such as decriminalization of sex work can play in improving the health, safety and well-being of SWs.
    The International journal on drug policy 01/2013; · 2.54 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Quantifying sexual activity of sub-populations with high-risk sexual behaviour is important in understanding HIV epidemiology. This study examined inconsistency of seven outcomes measuring self-reported clients per month (CPM) of female sex workers (FSWs) in southern India and implications for individual/population-level analysis. Multivariate negative binomial regression was used to compare key social/environmental factors associated with each outcome. A transmission dynamics model was used to assess the impact of differences between outcomes on population-level FSW/client HIV prevalence. Outcomes based on 'clients per last working day' produced lower estimates than those based on 'clients per typical day'. Although the outcomes were strongly correlated, their averages differed by approximately two-fold (range 39.0-79.1 CPM). The CPM measure chosen did not greatly influence standard epidemiological 'risk factor' analysis. Differences across outcomes influenced HIV prevalence predictions. Due to this uncertainty, we recommend basing population-based estimates on the range of outcomes, particularly when assessing the impact of interventions.
    AIDS and Behavior 08/2012; · 3.49 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The authors examined the impact of exposure to the 2010 Winter Olympics time period on outcomes measuring disruption of local sex work environments in Vancouver, Canada. The authors conducted a before-and-after study, using multivariable logistic regression, to assess the relationship between exposure to the Olympics period (19 January-14 March 2010) versus the post-Olympics period (1 April-1 July 2010) and outcomes. This study included 207 youth (14+ years) and adult sex workers (SWs) (Olympics: n=107; post-Olympics: n=100). SWs in the two periods were statistically similar, with an overall median age of 33 years (IQR: 28-40), and 106 (51.2%) of indigenous ancestry or ethnic minority. In separate multivariable logistic regression models, the Olympics period remained statistically significantly associated with perceived heightened police harassment of SWs without arrest (adjusted ORs (AOR): 3.95, 95% CIs 1.92 to 8.14), decreased availability of clients (AOR: 1.97, 95% CIs 1.11 to 3.48) and increased difficulty meeting clients due to road closures/construction (AOR: 7.68, 95% CIs 2.46 to 23.98). There were no significantly increased odds in perceived reports of new (0.999), youth (0.536) or trafficked SWs (zero reports) in the Olympic period. To reduce potential adverse public health impacts of enhanced police harassment and displacement of local sex work markets, results suggest that evidence-based public health strategies need to be adopted for host cities of future events (eg, the London 2012 Olympic Games), such as the removal of criminal sanctions targeting sex work and the piloting and rigorous evaluation of safer indoor work spaces.
    Sexually transmitted infections 03/2012; 88(4):301-3. · 2.18 Impact Factor
  • Kathleen Deering, Kate Shannon
    BMJ (Clinical research ed.). 01/2012; 345:e5845.
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    ABSTRACT: There is a lack of information on sexual violence (SV) among men who have sex with men and transgendered individuals (MSM-T) in southern India. As SV has been associated with HIV vulnerability, this study examined health related behaviours and practices associated with SV among MSM-T. Data were from cross-sectional surveys from four districts in Karnataka, India. Multivariable logistic regression models were constructed to examine factors related to SV. Multivariable negative binomial regression models examined the association between physician visits and SV. A total of 543 MSM-T were included in the study. Prevalence of SV was 18% in the past year. HIV prevalence among those reporting SV was 20%, compared to 12% among those not reporting SV (p = .104). In multivariable models, and among sex workers, those reporting SV were more likely to report anal sex with 5+ casual sex partners in the past week (AOR: 4.1; 95%CI: 1.2-14.3, p = .029). Increased physician visits among those reporting SV was reported only for those involved in sex work (ARR: 1.7; 95%CI: 1.1-2.7, p = .012). These results demonstrate high levels of SV among MSM-T populations, highlighting the importance of integrating interventions to reduce violence as part of HIV prevention programs and health services.
    PLoS ONE 01/2012; 7(3):e31705. · 3.73 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The Avahan Initiative, a large-scale HIV preventive intervention targeted to high-risk populations including female sex workers (FSWs), was initiated in 2003 in six high-prevalence states in India, including Karnataka. This study assessed if intervention exposure was associated with condom use with FSWs' sexual partners, including a dose-response relationship. Data were from a cross-sectional study (2006-07) of 775 FSWs in three districts in Karnataka. Survey methods accounted for the complex cluster sampling design. Bivariate and multivariable logistic regression was used to separately model the relationships between each of five intervention exposure variables and five outcomes for consistent condom use (CCU= always versus frequently/sometimes/never) with different sex partners, including with: all clients; occasional clients; most recent repeat client; most recent non-paying partner; and the husband or cohabiting partner. Linear tests for trends were conducted for three continuous intervention exposure variables. FSWs reported highest CCU with all clients (81.7%); CCU was lowest with FSWs' husband or cohabiting partner (9.6%). In multivariable analysis, the odds of CCU with all clients and with occasional clients were 6.3-fold [95% confidence intervals, CIs: 2.8-14.5] and 2.3-fold [95% CIs: 1.4-4.1] higher among FSWs contacted by intervention staff and 4.9-fold [95% CIs: 2.6-9.3] and 2.3-fold [95% CIs: 1.3-4.1] higher among those who ever observed a condom demonstration by staff, respectively, compared to those who had not. A significant dose-response relationship existed between each of these CCU outcomes and increased duration since first contacted by staff (P=0.001; P=0.006) and numbers of condom demonstrations witnessed (P=0.004; P=0.026); a dose-response relationship was also observed between condom use with all clients and number of times contacted by staff (P=0.047). Intervention exposure was not associated with higher odds of CCU with the most recent repeat client, most recent non-paying partner or with the husband or cohabiting partner. Study findings suggest that exposure to a large-scale HIV intervention for FSWs was associated with increased CCU with commercial clients. Moreover, there were dose-response relationships between CCU with clients and increased duration since first contacted by staff, times contacted by staff and number of condom demonstrations. Additional program effort is required to increase condom use with non-commercial partners.
    BMC Public Health 12/2011; 11 Suppl 6:S8. · 2.08 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Studies have demonstrated the significance of commercial sex work in the ongoing transmission of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections (STIs) in India. Clients of female sex workers (FSWs) are thought to be an important bridging population for HIV/STIs. However, there is a lack of information on basic characteristics of sex work clients. This study sought to describe the prevalence of HIV and other STIs, as well as examine the determinants of these pathogens among a sample of clients in south India. Data were from a cross-sectional biological and behavioural survey of FSW clients from six districts in Karnataka State, India. The prevalence of HIV, syphilis, herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV-2), chlamydia (CT) and gonorrhoea (NG) among clients was examined. Multivariable logistic regression models were used to analyse the socio-demographic, sexual behaviour and sex-work related characteristics related to the prevalence of each pathogen. Sampling weights and appropriate survey methods were utilized in regression models to account for complex sampling design. The total sample size was 2,745. The average age of clients was 30.4 (SE:0.3). Across the total sample, the prevalence of HIV, HSV-2, syphilis and CT/NG was 5.6%, 28.4%, 3.6% and 2.2%, respectively. The prevalence of HIV/STIs varied substantially across districts, reaching statistical significance for HIV (p<.0001) and CT/NG (p=.005). In multivariable models, duration of paying for commercial sex was associated with increased risk for HIV and HSV-2 (AOR: 1.1; 95%CI: 1.0-1.1, p<.0001). Clients with brothels as a main FSW solicitation site were associated with increased risk of HIV (AOR: 2.4; 95%CI: 1.2-4.7, p=.001), while those frequenting lodges were at increased risk for CT/NG (AOR: 6.3; 95%CI: 1.9-20.6, p=.03). Examining co-infections, clients with HSV-2 infections were at substantially higher risk of being HIV-positive (AOR: 10.4; 95%CI: 6.1-17.7, p<.0001). This study fills in important gaps in knowledge regarding clients in southern India. The strong association between HIV and HSV-2 infections highlights the complications in designing effective prevention, intervention and management programs of this well-hidden population.
    BMC Public Health 12/2011; 11 Suppl 6:S4. · 2.08 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Although female sex workers (FSWs) report high levels of condom use with commercial sex clients, particularly after targeted HIV preventive interventions have been implemented, condom use is often low with non-commercial partners. There is limited understanding regarding the factors that influence condom use with FSWs' non-commercial partners, and of how programs can be designed to increase condom use with these partners. The main objectives of this study were therefore to describe FSWs' self-reported non-commercial partners, along with interpersonal factors characterizing their non-commercial partnerships, and to examine the factors associated with consistent condom use (CCU) within non-commercial partnerships. This study used data collected from cross-sectional questionnaires administered to 988 FSWs in four districts in Karnataka state in 2006-07. We used bivariate and multivariable logistic regression analysis to examine the relationship between CCU (i.e., 'always' compared to 'never', 'sometimes' or 'frequently') with non-commercial partners of FSWs (including the respondents' husband or main cohabiting partner [if not married] and their most recent non-paying partner [who is neither a husband nor the main cohabiting partner, and with whom the FSW had sex within the previous year]) and interpersonal factors describing these partnerships, as well as social and environmental factors. Weighting and survey methods were used to account for the cluster sampling design. Overall, 511 (51.8%) FSWs reported having a husband or cohabiting partner and 247 (23.7%) reported having a non-paying partner. CCU with these partners was low (22.6% and 40.3% respectively). In multivariable analysis, the odds of CCU with FSWs' husband or cohabiting partner were 1.8-fold higher for FSWs whose partner knew she was a sex worker (adjusted odds ratio [AOR]: 1.84, 95% confidence intervals[CI]: 1.02-3.32) and almost 6-fold higher if the FSW was unmarried (AOR: 5.73, 95%CI: 2.79-11.76]. CCU with FSWs' non-paying partner decreased by 18% for each one-year increase in the duration of the relationship (AOR: 0.82, 95%CI: 0.68-0.97). This study revealed important patterns and interpersonal determinants of condom use within non-commercial partnerships of FSWs. Integrated structural and community-driven HIV/STI prevention programs that focus on gender and reduce sex work stigma should be investigated to increase condom use in non-commercial partnerships.
    BMC Public Health 12/2011; 11 Suppl 6:S11. · 2.08 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: This study explored low-income and transitional housing environments of women sex workers and their role in shaping agency and power in negotiating safety and sexual risk reduction in Vancouver, Canada. A series of 12 focus group discussions were conducted with 73 women currently involved in street-based sex work. These women were purposively sampled for a range of experiences living in low-income housing environments, including homeless shelters, transitional housing, and co-ed and women-only single-room occupancy (SRO) hotels. Drawing on the risk environment framework and theoretical constructs of gender, agency and power, analyses demonstrate that women continue to be vulnerable to violence and sexual and economic exploitation and have reduced ability to negotiate risk reduction resulting from the physical, structural and social environments of current dominant male-centred housing models. Within the physical environment, women described inhabitable housing conditions in SROs with infestations of bedbugs and rats, leading women to even more transitional housing options such as shelters and couch-surfing. In many cases, this resulted in their economic exploitation and increased sexual risk. Within the structural environment, enforcement of curfews and guest policies forced women to accept risky clients to meet curfew, or work outdoors where their ability to negotiate safety and condom use were limited. Certain policies promoted women's agency and mitigated their ability to reduce risks when selling sex. These included flexible curfews and being able to bring clients home. The social environments of co-ed single-room occupancy hotels resulted in repeated violence by male residents and discrimination by male building staff. Women-only shelters and SROs facilitated 'enabling environments' where women developed support systems with other working women that resulted in safer work practices. The narratives expressed in this study reveal the critical need for public health interventions and safer supportive housing to account for the daily lived experiences of women sex workers.
    Social Science [?] Medicine 12/2011; 73(11):1600-7. · 2.73 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Individuals working in the sex industry continue to experience many negative health outcomes. As such, disentangling the factors shaping poor health access remains a critical public health priority. Within a quasi-criminalised prostitution environment, this study aimed to evaluate the prevalence of occupational stigma associated with sex work and its relationship to barriers to accessing health services. Analyses draw on baseline questionnaire data from a community-based cohort of women in street-based sex work in Vancouver, Canada (2006-2008). Of a total of 252 women, 141 (55.9%) reported occupational sex work stigma (defined as hiding occupational sex work status from family, friends and/or home community), while 125 (49.6%) reported barriers to accessing health services in the previous six months. In multivariable analysis, adjusting for sociodemographic, interpersonal and work environment risks, occupational sex work stigma remained independently associated with an elevated likelihood of experiencing barriers to health access. Study findings indicate the critical need for policy and societal shifts in views of sex work as a legitimate occupation, combined with improved access to innovative, accessible and non-judgmental health care delivery models for street-based sex workers that include the direct involvement of sex workers in development and implementation.
    Culture Health & Sexuality 11/2011; 14(2):139-50. · 1.55 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Drawing on data from a community-based prospective cohort study in Vancouver, Canada, we examined the prevalence and individual, interpersonal and work environment correlates of homelessness among 252 women in street-based sex work. Bivariate and multivariate logistic regression using generalized estimating equations (GEE) was used to examine the individual, interpersonal and work environment factors that were associated with homelessness among street-based sex workers. Among 252 women, 43.3% reported homelessness over an 18-month follow-up period. In the multivariable GEE logistic regression analysis, younger age (adjusted odds ratio [aOR] = 0.93; 95%confidence interval [95%CI] 0.93-0.98), sexual violence by non-commercial partners (aOR = 2.14; 95%CI 1.06-4.34), servicing a higher number of clients (10+ per week vs < 10) (aOR = 1.68; 95%CI 1.05-2.69), intensive, daily crack use (aOR = 1.65; 95%CI 1.11-2.45), and servicing clients in public spaces (aOR = 1.52; CI 1.00-2.31) were independently associated with sleeping on the street. These findings indicate a critical need for safer environment interventions that mitigate the social and physical risks faced by homeless FSWs and increase access to safe, secure housing for women.
    BMC Public Health 08/2011; 11:643. · 2.08 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: This study investigated the relationship between drug use and sex work patterns and sex work income earned among street-based female sex workers (FSWs) in Vancouver, Canada. We used data from a sample of 129 FSWs who used drugs in a prospective cohort (2007-2008), for a total of 210 observations. Bivariate and multivariable linear regression using generalized estimating equations was used to model the relationship between explanatory factors and sex work income. Sex work income was log-transformed to account for skewed data. The median age of the sample at first visit was 37 years (interquartile range[IQR]: 30-43), with 46.5% identifying as Caucasian, 48.1% as Aboriginal and 5.4% as another visible minority. The median weekly sex work income and amount spent on drugs was $300 (IQR=$100-$560) and $400 (IQR=$150-$780), respectively. In multivariable analysis, for a 10% increase in money spent on drugs, sex work income increased by 1.9% (coeff: 0.20, 95% CIs: 0.04-0.36). FSWs who injected heroin, FSWs with higher numbers of clients and youth compared to older women (<25 versus 25+ years) also had significantly higher sex work income. This study highlights the important role that drug use plays in contributing to increased dependency on sex work for income among street-based FSWs in an urban Canadian setting, including a positive dose-response relationship between money spent on drugs and sex work income. These findings indicate a crucial need to scale up access and availability of evidence-based harm reduction and treatment approaches, including policy reforms, improved social support and economic choice for vulnerable women.
    Drug and alcohol dependence 06/2011; 118(2-3):430-6. · 3.60 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The objectives of this study were to examine the determinants of using a peer-led mobile outreach program (the Mobile Access Project [MAP]) among a sample of street-based female sex workers (FSWs) who use drugs in an urban Canadian setting and evaluate the relationship between program exposure and utilizing addiction treatment services. A detailed questionnaire was administered at baseline and bi-annual follow-up visits over 18 months (2006-2008) to 242 FSWs in Vancouver, Canada. We used bivariate and multivariate logistic regression with generalized estimating equations for both objectives, reporting unadjusted and adjusted odds ratios (AOR) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs). Over 18 months, 42.2% (202) reports of peer-led mobile outreach program use were made. High-risk women, including those servicing a higher weekly client volume (10+ compared to <10; AOR: 1.7, 95%CIs: 1.1-2.6) and those soliciting clients in deserted, isolated settings (AOR: 1.7, 95%CIs: 1.1-2.7) were more likely to use the program. In total, 9.4% (45) reports of using inpatient addiction treatment services were made (7.5% detoxification; 4.0% residential drug treatment), and 33.6% (161) using outpatient treatment (28.8% methadone; 9.6% alcohol/drug counsellor). Women who used the peer-led mobile outreach were more likely to use inpatient addiction treatment (AOR: 4.2, 95%CIs: 2.1-8.1), even after adjusting for drug use, environmental-structural factors, and outpatient drug treatment. Our findings demonstrate that FSWs at higher risk for sexually transmitted infections and violence are more likely to access this peer-led mobile outreach program and suggest that the program plays a critical role in facilitating utilization of detoxification and residential drug treatment.
    Drug and alcohol dependence 01/2011; 113(1):46-54. · 3.60 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: This study investigated the structural-environmental and individual-level social factors associated with the numbers of commercial sex clients of female sex workers (FSWs) per month (CPM). Data were analyzed from cross-sectional surveys of FSWs in 5 districts in Karnataka state, India (2004-2005). Bivariate and multivariable negative binomial regression models with generalized estimating equations were constructed for each district. Normalized weights were used to account for complex sampling design. Median (average) CPM varied significantly (P < 0.001) across districts, from 40.0 (56.9) CPM in the district with the highest immunodeficiency virus prevalence (33.9%) to 16.0 (26.1) in the district with the lowest prevalence (9.7%). In multivariable analysis, there was a significant positive association between rates of CPM and sex work as sole income in 4 districts (adjusted incidence rate ratios, AIRR: [95% confidence intervals]: AIRR: 1.3 [1.0-1.7], P < 0.005-1.7 [1.2-2.5], P < 0.01); age, typology (place of solicitation), and marital status were significantly associated with CPM in 3 districts, with an inverse association between age and CPM (P < 0.01). FSWs soliciting clients in brothels had higher rates of CPM than home-based FSWs in 2 districts (AIRR: 1.5 [1.1-2.0]-1.6 [1.0-2.7], P < 0.05), whereas public places-based FSWs had higher rates in 1 district (AIRR: 1.4 [1.1-1.8], P < 0.01); cohabiting FSWs had higher rates than married FSWs in 3 districts, whereas single FSWs had higher rates in one district. These results provide support for the continued development of structural core group interventions that address common elements of sex work placing FSWs at higher risk for immunodeficiency virus, as well as geographically focused programs that account for local differences in sexual structure.
    Sexually transmitted diseases 11/2010; 37(11):687-95. · 2.58 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

197 Citations
364 Downloads
2k Views
91.55 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 2011–2013
    • St. Paul's Hospital
      Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada
  • 2009–2013
    • University of British Columbia - Vancouver
      • • Department of Medicine
      • • British Colombia Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS
      • • School of Population and Public Health
      Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
    • BC Centre for Excellence in HIV/AID
      Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
  • 2008–2013
    • University of Manitoba
      • • Department of Community Health Sciences
      • • Department of Psychology
      Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
  • 2010
    • London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine
      Londinium, England, United Kingdom
  • 2009–2010
    • Imperial College London
      • Department of Infectious Disease Epidemiology
      London, ENG, United Kingdom