Scholar Examines Attitudes of African Immigrants on Sex and HIV/AIDS

Matthew Asare, who recently earned a Ph.D at the University of Cincinnati and who is currently a visiting professor at Northern Kentucky University in Highland Heights, has conducted research on African immigrants’ views on sex and AIDS/HIV. In many parts of Africa speaking about such subjects is frowned upon. Asare wanted to see if cultural taboos from their African homelands carried over to African immigrants in the United States.

Asare, a native of Ghana, found that more than half of the African immigrants surveyed reported that they had sex within the past month and did not use a condom. For the 12 percent of all respondents who reported multiple sexual partners within the month prior to the survey, more than half reported not using a condom and did not discuss their sexual history with their intimate partners.

Dr. Asare’s study found that younger African immigrants and those that had become more assimilated into American culture were more likely to speak freely about sexual topics. He hopes to focus his research efforts on developing public health intervention programs for immigrants from different African cultures, particularly in the area of HIV/AIDS prevention.

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