HIV Sexual Risk Behaviors and Multilevel Determinants Among Male Labor Migrants from Tajikistan
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The purpose of this study was to investigate HIV risk behaviors and their multilevel determinants in male labor migrants from Tajikistan to Moscow. In Russia and Central Asia, where AIDS rates are amongst the world’s highest, conditions in both sending and receiving countries pose serious challenges to HIV prevention. A survey of Tajik married male seasonal labor migrants in Moscow was completed by 200 workers from 4 bazaars and 200 workers from 18 construction sites as part of a mixed method study. The quantitative results indicated that male labor migrants were at risk for HIV due to higher sexual behaviors including sexual relations with sex workers (92 %), multiple partnering in the past month (86 %), unprotected sex with sex workers (33 %), and reduced frequency of condom use while drinking alcohol (57 %). Multivariate tests indicated the multilevel factors that increased HIV sexual risks including: pre-migration factors (e.g. used sex workers in Tajikistan); migrant work and lifestyle factors (e.g. greater number of times visited Moscow); migrant sexual and relational factors (e.g. regular partner in Moscow); and migrant health and mental health factors (e.g. increased frequency of alcohol use). Qualitative findings from longitudinal ethnographic interviews and observations of a subset of 40 purposively sampled Tajik male migrants demonstrated how these multilevel pre-migration and migration factors account for HIV risk and protective behaviors in context. These findings underscore the seriousness of HIV risk for labor migrants and call both for multilevel approaches to prevention and for further study.
KeywordsHIV risk Labor migrants Central Asia
The research described in this article was funded by the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (R01HD056954).
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