Mid-South News
12:45 am
Tue August 14, 2007

HIV Testing in the Jails & Prisons

Memphis, TN – African-American women are now at greatest risk of contracting HIV. As we heard last week from the folks on the frontlines, many are pointing to the jails where a disproportionate number of African American men cycle through.

Most African-American women who've contracted HIV have gotten it from having unprotected sex with an infected male.

Very few prisons have mandatory HIV testing upon arrival or release, making it difficult to get a handle on the problem.

According to a report to the Mid-South AIDS Fund by the National Institute for Law and Equity or NILE, 90 percent of the Shelby County jail population is African American. Thereby, increasing the risk for African Americans.

Next week, we will continue our series on HIV. Next time we will continue explore the barriers to testing and education, and look at what some agencies are doing to combat HIV and AIDS in African American communities.