Don’t blame men on the down low (DL) for the rising HIV rates among African-American women. A new study shows that bisexually active black men who identified as DL were no more likely to spread HIV to their female partners than those who didn’t identify as DL.

Specifically, researchers reported 59 percent of both DL and non-DL bisexual men had unprotected sex with women, and both groups had similar HIV rates (44 percent of DL men were positive compared with 56 percent of those not on the DL).
Lisa Bond, PhD, lead author of the Public Health Management Corporation  study, sums up: “We need to shift our focus away from the down low and on to more meaningful issues that do drive the HIV epidemic among communities of color—like poverty, racism, homelessness and crime incarceration rates.”

Forget the blame game. Wanna protect yourself? Get tested, know your status and practice safer sex.