Male Homosexual Behavior and the Effects of AIDS Education: A Study of Behavior and Safer Sex in New Zealand and South Australia

By B. R. Simon Rosser | Go to book overview

The significant differences in sexual behavior between the samples concerned safer sex activities, while the prevalence of potentially unsafe sex behavior such as receptive and insertive anal intercourse and the prevalence of condom use did not significantly differ across samples. Similarly, there were no discernible differences between the samples on questions concerning condom usage and the proportion of respondents visiting gay saunas and places for anonymous sex (that is, beats), which suggests, at least in cities of similar size and HIV prevalence, these aspects of homosexual behavior are stable regardless of the type of education campaigns people are exposed to or the degree of acceptance of homosexuality in the particular society.12

Rather than differences in behavior, differences in seeking testing and sources of safer sex information were found, possibly reflecting respondents' responses to different emphases in AIDS education as well as legislation and social attitudes concerning homosexuality.


NOTES
1.
Erv Raible, in Rutledge [ 1988], p. 24.
2.
Rosser [ 1988c], in examining the effects of the Australian Grim Reaper AIDS campaign on HIV testing and HIV detection rates, used comparative data from NZ collected during the same period.
3.
In order to compare the NZ (four-point Likert scale) and the SA frequency data (three-point Likert scale), the NZ categories of "Always" and "Mostly" were collapsed to equate the SA "Often" category.
4.
t (230) = 2.73, p≪.01; scale: 1-5; 1 = very easy, 5 = impossible.
5.
Examination of this qualitative data revealed that the major similarity between the samples was respondents reporting pharmacies (that is, retail drug stores) as the most likely source of condoms in both NZ and SA (n = 87 and n = 45, respectively). While in NZ the next most frequent source of condoms were retail shops (n = 38), on prescription from a doctor (n = 19), and the local sauna (n = 14), the next most frequent source for condoms reported by the SA sample were gay groups (n = 11), vending machines (n = 7), and the sauna (n = 7).
6.
X2 = 27.13, df = 1, p≪.001.
7.
X2 = 11.54, df=1, p≪.001.
8.
X2 = 13.56, df = 1, p≪.001.
9.
That significantly more respondents in SA reported being tested away from clinics, hospitals, or general practitioners was likely the result of a previous research study investigating HIV prevalence at a variety of Adelaide gay venues in 1985 [ Ross, 1986; Ross & Arrindell, 1988].
10.
X2= 1.90, df = 1, ns.
11.
X2 = 16.01,df = 1, p≪.001.
12.
The only exception to this finding was a difference concerning analingual activity, where NZ respondents reported a higher prevalence of the behavior, but with less frequency. (Chapters 5 and 6 further explore the issues of the effects of societal acceptance of homosexuality and AIDS education on the behavior of homosexually active men.)

-45-

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