Dune, Tinashe, Janette Perz, Zelalem Mengesha, & David Ayika (2017). Culture clash? Investigating constructions of sexual and reproductive health from the perspective of 1.5 generation migrants in Australia using Q methodology. Reproductive Health, 14, art. 50, 13 pp. (Open access) (doi: 10.1186/s12978-017-0310-9) (Link: https://doi.org/10.1186/s12978-017-0310-9)

Abstract: Background: In Australia, those who migrate as children or adolescents (1.5 generation migrants) may have entered a new cultural environment at a crucial time in their psychosexual development. These migrants may have to contend with constructions of sexual and reproductive health from at least two cultures which may be at conflict on the matter. This study was designed to investigate the role of culture in constructions of sexual and reproductive health and health care seeking behaviour from the perspective of 1.5 generation migrants. Methods: Forty-two adults from various ethno-cultural backgrounds took part in this Q methodological study. Online, participants rank-ordered forty-two statements about constructions of sexual and reproductive health and health seeking behaviours based on the level to which they agreed or disagreed with them. Participants then answered a series of questions about the extent to which their ethnic/cultural affiliations influenced their identity. A by-person factor analysis was then conducted, with factors extracted using the centroid technique and a varimax rotation. Results: A seven-factor solution provided the best conceptual fit for constructions of sexual and reproductive health and help-seeking. Factor A compared progressive and traditional sexual and reproductive health values. Factor B highlighted migrants’ experiences through two cultural lenses. Factor C explored migrant understandings of sexual and reproductive health in the context of culture. Factor D explained the role of culture in migrants’ intimate relationships, beliefs about migrant sexual and reproductive health and engagement of health care services. Factor E described the impact of culture on sexual and reproductive health related behaviour. Factor F presented the messages migrant youth are given about sexual and reproductive health. Lastly, Factor G compared constructions of sexual and reproductive health across cultures. Conclusions: This study has demonstrated that when the cultural norms of migrants’ country of origin are maintained it has a significant influence on how 1.5 generation migrants construct, experience and understand various aspects of sexual and reproductive health. Policy makers, health care professionals and resettlement service providers are advised to engage with migrant parents and youth in exploring, discussing, reframing and reconstructing SRH in an Australian context.

Tinashe Dune <t.dune@westernsydney.edu.au> is in the School of Science and Health and in the Centre for Health Research, School of Medicine, Western Sydney University, Penrith, Australia.

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