New to New York: Ecological and Psychological Determinants of Health Among Recently Arrived Young Adult Gay and Bisexual Urban Migrants

[Speaker] Pachankis, John:1
1:Yale University (United States of America)

Young gay and bisexual men move to urban enclaves to escape homophobic environments and achieve greater freedom, yet little is known about new urban arrivals' health risks. Drawing on theories of high-risk urban migration, we investigated associations between young gay and bisexual men's migration experiences and health risks. Gay and bisexual men (n = 273; ages 18-29) who had recently moved to New York City completed an online survey regarding hometown characteristics, arrival experiences, migration motivations, and health risks (i.e., condomless sex, substance abuse, mental health problems). Hometown discrimination, current urban surroundings (e.g., social support, arrival recency, income, gay neighborhood residence), and moving to escape stress and pursue opportunity demonstrated theoretically meaningful associations with risk. Findings offer the most comprehensive picture to date of gay and bisexual migrants' health. Results can inform structural- and individual-level interventions to support the health of this sizeable and vulnerable segment of the urban population.
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