Background The objective was to assess the proportion of independent indoor female sex workers (FSW) in West Yorkshire, UK who advertise unprotected sex, and to investigate any association with factors that predict economic need.
Methods Data on whether independent indoor FSW (defined as those not advertising via an escort agency or through a parlour) offered unprotected sexual services, along with demographic data, was collected from 462 advertisement profiles of FSW in West Yorkshire from the website www.adultwork.com. One-way analysis of variance and chi-squared statistics were used to test the significance of associations between advertising unprotected vaginal and oral sex, offering anal sex, and FSW age, location and cost of services.
Results Unprotected vaginal sex was advertised by 8% of FSW, and unprotected oral sex by 74% of FSW. FSW offering unprotected vaginal sex had significantly lower hourly rates, were more likely to live in the more economically deprived areas of Wakefield and Bradford than in Leeds, and were more likely to offer anal sex.
Conclusion Advertised condom use for vaginal and oral sex by independent indoor FSW in West Yorkshire was significantly lower than rates of protected sex found in previous studies based in London and the south of England. FSW advertising unprotected vaginal sex were more likely to have predictors of greater financial need, such as lower hourly rates, provision of higher risk anal sex, and come from more economically deprived areas. They therefore represent a hard-to-reach target group for health promotion.
- oral sex
- unsafe sex