A Profile of HIV/AIDS-Related Issues Among Female Offenders in New York State

Susan M. Crimmins, California State University/N.D.R.I.
Steven Belenko, Columbia University
Michael Chaple, N. D. R. I., Inc.

At the end of 1999, 21,341 (2.1%) male inmates and 2,300 (3.4%) female inmates were known to be HIV positive in state prisons. The rate of HIV infection was higher among females than among males in all regions and in most states. New York State reported the largest number of male and female HIV positive inmates (6240 and 760 respectively), with 21.5% of the total female inmate population in New York State being HIV positive (Bureau of Justice Statistics, 1999).

As part of a NIDA-funded research study, which is examining HIV service and access needs among criminal justice populations, interviews (n=300) are being conducted with offenders at various stages of the New York State criminal justice system. Thirty percent of these offenders (n = 90) are female.

Findings' pertaining to key HIV/AIDS-related issues among female offenders, such as knowledge, high-risk behaviors, violence, health and mental health service access, will be presented and discussed. Implications for criminal justice program planning will also be addressed.

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Updated 05/20/2006