Women Protecting Women: Brief Interventions for Drug-Using Women Sex Workers

James A. Inciardi, Principal Investigator
Hilary L. Surratt, Co-Principal Investigator
Marion C. Kiley, Site Director

Initiated: 2000

Funding Source: National Institute on Drug Abuse

Project Summary:

The “Women Protecting Women Project” was designed to develop and evaluate a peer-led model of HIV/HBV risk reduction for drug-involved female sex workers in Miami, Florida. There had been growing concern about the limitations of intervention models that focused solely on individual level determinants of behavior and were shaped by the priorities of researchers external to the communities studied. From an empowerment perspective, community participation in prevention planning and research was expected to empower individuals as well as communities—at the individual level, by developing health related competencies such as decision making and knowledge of resources, and at the community level by creating new networks, resources, and opportunities. The research aimed to implement and evaluate (through multiple follow-ups) the effectiveness of two brief drug and alcohol risk reduction interventions by randomly assigning 800 study participants to one of two treatment conditions: a sex-worker focused intervention developed with active and former sex-workers and delivered by former sex-workers in recovery, and a conventional intervention (the revered “NIDA Standard”) delivered by former sex-workers in recovery.

Select Publications:

Inciardi, James A., Hilary A. Surratt, Steven P. Kurtz, and Jason C. Weaver. 2005. “The Effect of Serostatus on HIV Risk Behavior Change among Women Sex Workers in Miami, Florida” AIDS Care 17: 81-101.

Surrat, Hilary L., Steven P. Kurtz, Jason C. Weaver, and James A. Inciardi. 2005. “The Connections of Mental Health Problems, Violent Life Experiences, and the Social Milieu of the ‘Stroll’ with the HIV Risk Behaviors of Female Street Sex Workers.” Journal of Psychology and Human Sexuality 17: 23-44.

Kurtz, Steven P., Hillary L. Surratt, Marion C. Keley, and James A. Inciardi. 2005. “Barriers to Health and Social Services for Street-Based Sex-Workers.” Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Undeserved 16: 345-361.