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Substance Abuse Among African American Women in Miami

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Drug and alcohol abuse are among the leading causes of health issues among individuals from all racial and ethnic backgrounds (Miller, Forcehimes, & Zweben, 2011). The vice has been on the rise in the past few decades. Unfortunately, little research has been done connecting the rising number of substance abuse cases to the causes of the same. Recent statistics indicate that African American women are significantly involved in substance abuse, which threatens their health. The most abused drugs include alcohol, marijuana, and cocaine among others. In this research, the focus will be to assess the prevalence of substance abuse among African women aged between 25 and 55 years living in Miami. Miami is known as a luxurious area, and drug abuse among African Americans has been on the rise owing to the diversity in culture in the city. The study shall be guided by the Windshield survey tool that allows the collection of data regarding the history of participants in a study. The Windshield survey involves the collection of data concerning the environment in which the target population resides. Questions concerning the nature of housing in the area, availability of public places, infrastructure, and general land use are among the addressed issues in the Windshield survey tool. The tool has roadmaps that guide the systematic collection of data. Data regarding the environment is essential for this research, and it will be collected using quantitative methods of research. Moreover, it will mainly involve obtaining first-hand information from observations during the visits.

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Miami is selected for this research owing to its convenience and accessibility to the public. Besides, the area has a diversity of culture and African American women are available in this area. Researchers in this study have sufficient knowledge regarding the populations in this area, which further increases the chances of collecting reliable data. A team of students in the nursing field will carry out this research, and it will involve the collection and analysis of data. Each member will collect data independently. However, the collection date will be compared for consistency and reliability. Since this research targets the African American population, data will be collected using both quantitative and qualitative methods in later stages when direct engagement between the researcher and the participants will be required. Qualitative methods involve the collection of data using interviews and recording the data for sampling in the next stage. In this research, this method would be a good way of collecting data from the population selected. The first step towards achieving data collection through this method will involve determining the sample size, which will be made up of African American women aged between 25 and 55 years living in Miami. In the later stages of direct engagement with participants, each participant will be given 30 minutes to provide information regarding her substance use status. The participants will first be informed of their right to accept or reject to be involved in the research. The participants would also be assured of anonymity and confidentiality of information shared. Alternatively, a questionnaire with open-ended questions could be used. In this case, each participant will be required to fill in the questions and submit the questionnaire to the research panel.

Windshield Survey


Most houses in Miami are neat and well decorated, thus making the area an attractive residential place for residents. Even the older houses are well kept and refurbished, and thus they are attractive. One would not think that they are older than ten years. The houses are luxurious, and every household seems to have access to the basic issues, which include power and clean water. The houses seem quite expensive and only the wealthy can afford to pay the rent. Therefore, it is evident that the houses are not accessible to persons with special needs, such as individuals with disabilities, as they are considered financially unstable. From the outward look, the houses look new due to the decorations and the well-kept compounds.

Public Places

The surrounding area has plenty of public places, which include hotels and restaurants that are designed luxuriously to suit the needs of both residents and tourists (Shell-Weiss, 2009). The public areas are well kept, and they can host a great number of people. The public sites have well-decorated seats where people gather for special events. The public sites host numerous food vendors where residents and visitors purchase refreshments. Visitors, who are coming to visit the area for tourism purposes, mainly occupy public places. However, residents gather at times especially when there are certain events that warrant such gatherings. There is always a mixture of both the whites and the blacks in public places. The public areas have different flowers, thus offering captivating scenery.


Visitors coming to the area for tourism purposes are the primary occupants of the parks. The parks are usually occupied by both whites and blacks. Besides, they make nice relaxation centers for both the residents and visitors. The parks have well-maintained seats decorated in different colors, which makes the parks the ideal places for relaxation. The parks are endowed with a variety of recreational sites and facilities including basketball pitches and tennis courts. The green grass growing in the parks is well-trimmed. The parks have trees that make the site a good place to relax.

Culture and Entertainment

The community has preserved its culture, and it acts as a center for tourists from all over the world. The aspect of culture and entertainment is evidenced by the presence of museums, libraries, schools, and transit stations. The museums host special events, which act as centers for tourists’ attractions in the city (Rath, 2007). Various events such as concerts, performances, and craft shows are among the main events that take place in the museums, and they are accessible to both the residents and visitors. Various luxurious restaurants, guest houses, and wedding grounds are available in the city. These facilities mainly host visitors. Libraries are also located within the community, and they are well equipped to accommodate the needs of both residents and non-residents. The facilities are centrally located, and they are accessible through public means. Therefore, the local community accesses these facilities easily.


The well-decorated buildings on the roadsides define the streetscape of Miami with every effort made to keep the sidewalks clean. Trees and beautiful flowers on the sideways are a common feature that welcomes one to the city. Garbage cans are seen on each side of the road, which is a clear indication that the city’s management is concerned about cleanliness. Well-decorated seats appear on the roadsides, and they are usually used by both residents and non-residents.

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Street Use

Normally, there are few people on the sidewalks during day time, but the number increases in the early morning and late in the afternoon. The sidewalks are well lit at night even though there are not many pedestrians on the sidewalks at night. In most cases, the side walkers are usually on their way to workstations and they rarely interact with each other.

Commercial Activity

Given that the city receives many guests, most businesses are restaurants and food vendors. There are no vacant storefronts in the city as all are occupied by business persons seeking to take advantage of the profitable business opportunities presented by visitors.

Road Signs

There are numerous road signs across the community roads directing people to various sites such as museums, libraries, and schools among others. The signs are informative, and even visitors can use the signs to locate the major sites that they want to visit. Since the area receives thousands of visitors each year, the road signs are important as they offer directions to various institutions.


Tourism is the principal industry in the community, and the city receives millions of visitors each year. Mostly, visitors come to enjoy the recreational sites in the city. Tourism is the primary source of income for the city, hence reducing pollution. Other industries, which are flourishing in the city, are the banking sector and commerce, and they are not linked to any form of pollution.

Land Use

Land use in the community is maximized, and only small pieces of land remain idle. The community’s land is apportioned into three main uses, viz. residential commercial, and industrial (Shell-Weiss, 2009). Residential land takes most of the land with luxurious rental houses dominating the area. Roads are the dominant form of infrastructure crisscrossing the land while railways are only located at the borders of the community.


The infrastructure within the community is exceptional with all areas having access to the necessary services and recreational amenities such as electricity and water. Bridges, roads, and other infrastructures are equally distributed, and each household has access to these essential services.

Public Transport

The city has a well-organized public transport system comprising Metro buses and metro rails. The metro rail trips are less expensive as compared to other forms of transportation available to the community with each trip costing $2 payable through an Easy card. Similarly, buses are inexpensive as they charge the same amount as the metro rails. The two are energy efficient as evidenced by the cheap transport fee charged per trip. The two forms of transport are used by both residents and visitors since it is easier to use than other forms of transportation.

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Traffic in the community is hectic, and most vehicles using the roads are private cars. Few commercial vehicles are present on the roads as opposed to private vehicles, which dominate the roads most times. Bicycles are not as many as vehicles and there are narrow lanes for bicycle users. Traffic is not always heavy, and it is only severe in the morning and afternoon hours.


Miller, R., Forcehimes, A., & Zweben, A. (2011). Treating addiction: A guide for professionals. New York, NY: Guilford Press.

Rath, J. (2007). Tourism, ethnic diversity, and the city. New York, NY: Routledge.

Shell-Weiss, M. (2009). Coming to Miami: A social history. Gainesville, FL: University Press of Florida.

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