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Justice-involved women’s preferences for an internet-based Sexual Health Empowerment curriculum

Michelle L. Pickett (Department of Pediatrics, Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA)
Joi Wickliffe (Preventive Medicine and Public Health, University of Kansas School of Medicine, Kansas City, Kansas, USA)
Amanda Emerson (School of Nursing and Health Studies, University of Missouri-Kansas City, Missouri, USA)
Sharla Smith (Preventive Medicine and Public Health, University of Kansas School of Medicine Wichita, Wichita, Kansas, USA)
Megha Ramaswamy (Preventive Medicine and Public Health, University of Kansas School of Medicine, Kansas City, Kansas, USA)

International Journal of Prisoner Health

ISSN: 1744-9200

Article publication date: 30 August 2019

Issue publication date: 10 February 2020

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to gain insight into justice-involved women’s preferences for an internet-based Sexual Health Empowerment (SHE) curriculum.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors analyzed data from four focus groups conducted with 52 women in a minimum-security county jail in a Midwestern US city.

Findings

Women reported daily access to the internet while in the community and use of the internet for searching about health concerns. Four themes emerged in the discussion about preferences for an internet-based SHE curriculum, that it cover healthy sexual expression, how to access resources, video as an educational modality and a non-judgmental approach.

Practical implications

Justice-involved women are potentially reachable through internet-based health education. Their preferences for content and modality can be used to inform internet-based sexual health programming designed specifically for this population. Using this modality could offer easily disseminated, low-cost and consistent messaging about sexual health for a vulnerable group of women.

Originality/value

Though internet-based health education programming has been widely utilized in the general population, less attention has been paid to if and how these programs could be utilized with a vulnerable group of women who move between the justice system and communities. This exploratory study begins to fill that gap.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

This study was supported by the National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health, through Grant No. R01 CA181047 (PI Ramaswamy), National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health, through Grant No. R01 CA181047-S1 Diversity Supplement (Trainee Smith) and National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health, through Grant No. R01 CA181047-S2 Diversity Supplement (Trainee Pickett).

Citation

Pickett, M.L., Wickliffe, J., Emerson, A., Smith, S. and Ramaswamy, M. (2020), "Justice-involved women’s preferences for an internet-based Sexual Health Empowerment curriculum", International Journal of Prisoner Health, Vol. 16 No. 1, pp. 38-44. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJPH-01-2019-0002

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2019, Emerald Publishing Limited