She is a social scientist whose focuses on the documenting and intervening on structural drivers of HIV/STIs and violence among people who use drugs and engage in sex work. She has conducted extensive research in the US, India, Thailand, and Pakistan examining the role of microeconomics and peer influence on reducing HIV risk among people who use drugs and women who sell sex. Susan is the Co-Director of the Baltimore HIV Collaboratory as well as the Addiction and Overdose focus area of the Bloomberg American Health Initiative. She recently completed a study examining the role of the police on the STI/HIV risk environment of street-based sex workers, which includes one of the first cohort of sex workers in the US. She has recently examined the validity, acceptability, and implementation of several fentanyl-testing technologies, which has directly informed the decriminalization of drug checking in several states in the U.S. She also studies the impact of a structural level intervention on HIV risk among female sex workers in Baltimore, which has created a full service, harm reduction women’s drop-in center.
Susan will examine the thin line between nightlife and daylife among street-based people who use drugs and other marginalised and socially disadvantaged groups in Baltimore. She will focus on the structural vulnerabilities (e.g., unstable housing, food insecurity, violence, work exploitation) that elevate their overdose risk in the context of an extensive fentanyl epidemic that has fueled an unprecedented overdoses epidemic.