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Alcohol-Related Problems among Black, Hispanic and White Men: The Contribution of Neighborhood Poverty

Rhonda Jones-Webb, Lonnie Snowden, Denise Herd, Brian Short, Peter Hannan

Objective: We examined the cross-sectional relationships between race/ethnicity, neighborhood poverty and alcohol-related problems among black, Hispanic and white male drinkers. Test hypotheses were that black and Hispanic men living in more impoverished neighborhoods would report increased numbers of alcohol-related problems than comparable white men. Method: Study hypotheses were tested in a sample of 744 black, Hispanic and white men participating in the 1992 National Alcohol Follow-up Survey. Study hypotheses were analyzed using generalized linear model regression analysis. Results: Neighborhood poverty had a greater effect on alcohol-related problems in black than in white men, partially supporting our hypothesis. Black men living in more impoverished neighborhoods reported greater numbers of alcohol-related problems than comparable white men; there were no race differences among more affluent men. Neighborhood poverty had little effect on alcohol-related problems in Hispanic men. Conclusions: Findings suggest that, given unfavorable economic conditions, black men will report greater numbers of alcohol-related problems than comparable white men. (J. Stud. Alcohol 58: 539-545, 1997)