On 1 May 2004 Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania joined the European Union and many Balts made use of the right of free movement of labour to migrate to the UK. Contrary to the government’s projections, EU enlargement resulted in a large influx of predominantly young economic migrants. Given their demographic profile, the Baltic migrant population in the UK is likely to be sexually active and have reproductive ambitions. In view of the fact that there is a high background prevalence of STI and HIV in their countries of origin, that sex education is limited and that their uptake of safer sex measures and patterns of health service use are unknown, East European migrants – including the Balts – are considered to be potentially at risk of sexual ill health and reproductive morbidity. Based on a survey of over 700 Estonians, Latvians and Lithuanians living in London, the aim of this presentation is to examine the sexual attitudes and lifestyles of the Baltic community in London from a comparative perspective with the aim of evaluating and understanding their sexual and reproductive health behaviour and service utilisation in order to inform the development of culturally appropriate health promotion and HIV prevention material and service planning. The research was funded by the British Medical Research Council.
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