- Funding: NIDA RO1 DA034973
- Principal Investigator: Douglas L. Polcin, EdD
HIV risk among criminal justice offenders is high. Rates of infection are up to 10 times higher than the general population and 25% of all HIV infected persons have contact with the criminal justice system. Overcrowding of jails and prisons puts offenders at increased risk for HIV as does a failure to successfully transition from prison or jail into the community. Overcrowding of criminal justice institutions has reached crisis proportions in the U.S. and nowhere is the problem worse than in California. Selection of areas to focus on is made on a case by case basis depending on offender needs. Drug-free housing will be accessed through the Sober Living Network (SLN), an organization that certifies over 500 sober living houses (SLHs) in California. Our recent study of SLHs showed residents improved in terms of alcohol and drug use, work, arrests, and psychiatric problems. However, criminal justice offenders fared worse than other residents and HIV issues were not assessed. Expanding on our current HIV service grants that use MI for MSM and transgenders, we will use MICM to address HIV risk and the syndemic mix of factors that increase risk.