Cynthia Fair, associate professor of human services studies, and Britten Ginsburg '06, of the National Alliance of State and Territorial AIDS Directors, have co-authored a research article for the Journal of HIV/AIDS and Social Services.
The article, “HIV-Related Stigma, Discrimination, and Knowledge of Legal Rights among Infected Adults,” is based on research Ginsburg conducted as a human service studies major while at Elon.
From the article abstract:
“Literature on HIV-related stigma suggests that high levels of stigma are associated with poor medical adherence, depression, and decreased self-esteem. More recent research has focused on the acts of HIV-related discrimination experienced by infected individuals. However, little literature has explored the connection between perceptions of HIV-related stigma, discrimination, and knowledge of legal rights. Thirty-seven HIV-positive adults were surveyed regarding their experiences with HIV-related stigma and discrimination. Participants’ knowledge of legal rights concerning HIV-related discrimination was also assessed. Personalized stigma was significantly correlated with reports of discrimination. Thirty-three percent of participants reported they had lost a job, and 25% reported they had to move because of their HIV status. Overall, the majority of participants were relatively informed about the legal rights of HIV-infected individuals. However, 21% believed that a restaurant could refuse to serve a person with HIV. Further analyses revealed that those participants who had high knowledge of legal rights scored significantly lower on the disclosure concerns subscale of the stigma scale and total number of acts of discrimination. Findings indicate the need for education concerning legal rights and that HIV-related stigma and discrimination are still a concern for infected individuals.”