This study investigates how relative socioeconomic status influences the sexual behaviors of young women and men aged 14–24 years in KwaZulu-Natal Province, South Africa—an environment characterized by high HIV prevalence and high rates of poverty and inequality. Relative economic disadvantage is found to significantly increase the likelihood of a variety of unsafe sexual behaviors and experiences. Poorer young people, especially females, also have significantly lower access to media sources for family planning information. Without sufficient attention in the design and placement of HIV prevention programs to the economic and social conditions in which individuals live, the potential effectiveness of the global response to HIV/AIDS is sacrificed
Hallman, Kelly. 2004. "Socioeconomic disadvantage and unsafe sexual behaviors among young women and men in South Africa," Policy Research Division Working Paper no. 190. New York: Population Council.