UBC Faculty Research and Publications

Incarceration Among Street-Involved Youth in a Canadian Study : Implications for Health and Policy Interventions Omura, John; Wood, Evan; Nguyen, Paul; Kerr, Thomas; DeBeck, Kora


Background Risk factors for incarceration have been well described among adult drug using populations; however, less is known about incarceration among at-risk youth. This study examines the prevalence and correlates of incarceration among street-involved youth in a Canadian setting. Methods From September 2005 to May 2012, data were collected from the At-Risk Youth Study, a prospective cohort of street-involved youth aged 14 – 26 who use illicit drugs. Generalized estimating equation (GEE) logistic regression was used to identify factors associated with recent incarceration defined as incarceration in the previous six months. Results Among 1019 participants, 362 (36%) reported having been recently incarcerated during the study period. In multivariate GEE analysis, homelessness (adjusted odds ratio [AOR]= 1.60), daily crystal methamphetamine use (AOR= 1.56), public injecting (AOR= 1.33), drug dealing (AOR= 1.48) and being a victim of violence (AOR= 1.68) were independently associated with incarceration (all p

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