Objective: Data were collected from 270 detained male adolescents (aged 14–18 years) to determine the association between ever having been in a gang and a range of sexual behaviours such as sexual activity, male condom use, sex with multiple partners, and drug use during sex.
Methods: Participants answered survey questions using audio computer assisted self interviewing (A-CASI) procedures, which assessed demographic, family factors, history of gang membership, and sexual behaviours.
Results: Multiple logistic regression analyses, controlling for demographic, socioeconomic status, and family factors, indicated that adolescents who reported having been in a gang, relative to their peers reporting no gang involvement, were 5.7 times more likely to have had sex, 3.2 times more likely to have got a girl pregnant, and almost four times more likely to have been “high” on alcohol or other drugs during sexual intercourse, have had sex with a partner who was “high” on alcohol or other drugs, or have had sex with multiple partners concurrently.
Conclusions: Findings suggest that having been in a gang can discriminate between levels of STI associated risk behaviours among an otherwise high risk population—detained adolescent males.
- A-CASI, audio computer assisted self interviewing
- STIs, sexually transmitted infections
- detained males
- sexual risks
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