Teen pregnancy carries a high cost to the girl and society. According to the CDC: “Teen childbearing can have negative health, economic, and social consequences for mothers and their children and costs the United States approximately $9.4 billion annually.
During 1991–2014, the birth rate among teens aged 15–19 years in the United States declined 61%, from 61.8 to 24.2 births per 1,000, the lowest rate ever recorded. Nonetheless, in 2014, the teen birth rate remained approximately twice as high for Hispanic and non-Hispanic black (black) teens compared with non-Hispanic white (white) teens, and geographic and socioeconomic disparities remain, irrespective of race/ethnicity.
Social determinants associated with teen childbearing (e.g., low parental educational attainment and limited opportunities for education and employment) are more common in communities with higher proportions of racial and ethnic minorities, contributing to the challenge of further reducing disparities in teen births.”4
1 National Center for Injury Prevention and Control: Division of Violence Prevention (2012). Sexual Violence (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), Washington, D.C.: National Center for Injury Prevention and Control.
2 Breiding, Matthew, Smith, Sharon G., Basile, Kathleen C., Walters, Mikel, Chen, Jieru, and Merrick, Melissa T. (2014, September 5). Prevalence and Characteristics of Sexual Violence, Stalking, and Intimate Partner Violence Victimization – National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey, United States, 2011. (Report to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention). Washington, D.C.: Surveillance Summaries.
3 Centers For Disease Control and Prevention (2012). Sexual Facts at a Glance. Atlanta, Ga: Centers For Disease Control.
4 Romero, Lisa, Pazol, Karen, Warner, Lee, Cox, Shanna, Kroelinger, Charlan, Besera, Ghenet, Brittain, Anna, Fuller, TaleriaR., Koumans, Emilia, Barfield, Wanda (2016, April 29). Reduced Disparities in Birth Rates Among Teens Aged 15–19 Years — United States, 2006–2007 and 2013–2014 (Publication Mortality and “Morbidity Weekly Report 65(16);409–414).Washington, D.C., Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Cross-posted with permission of SAFIGI Outreach Foundation Ltd.
This article is extracted from the Research paper titled ‘America’s Public Policy on Sexuality: The Repression of Girls in Vulnerable Populations’ in Chapter 4 of the Safety Report by SAFIGI Outreach Foundation ‘Safety First for Girls’.