In this study, we used a mixed methods approach to explore the determinants of relationship patterns and risky sex among homeless men living in downtown Los Angeles. This involved analysis of qualitative interviews focused on gender ideology and sexual events (n = 30) as well as structured interviews (n = 305) focused on homeless men's sexual partners, sexual behaviors, and social networks. We found that men valued committed relationships but were frustrated by their lack of access to female partners (accentuated by the stigma attached to homeless males) and also by structural and logistical barriers to relationships. Some men reported monogamous relationships; such relationships were less likely with homeless or substance-using partners and more likely with partners central to men's social networks.
This report is part of the RAND Corporation External publication series. Many RAND studies are published in peer-reviewed scholarly journals, as chapters in commercial books, or as documents published by other organizations.
Our mission to help improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis is enabled through our core values of quality and objectivity and our unwavering commitment to the highest level of integrity and ethical behavior. To help ensure our research and analysis are rigorous, objective, and nonpartisan, we subject our research publications to a robust and exacting quality-assurance process; avoid both the appearance and reality of financial and other conflicts of interest through staff training, project screening, and a policy of mandatory disclosure; and pursue transparency in our research engagements through our commitment to the open publication of our research findings and recommendations, disclosure of the source of funding of published research, and policies to ensure intellectual independence. For more information, visit www.rand.org/about/principles.
The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.