Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Teen Pregnancy, Part Deux

Next poll!

What do you think the consequences of addressing and not addressing Teen Pregnancy are? Here's what I have so far.
    • Addressing:
      • Adolescents will become educated about the risks associated with engaging in unprotected sex.
      • Society benefits through more controlled population growth, less expenses in the health care arena, etc
      • Less babies are lost due to lack of prenatal care that is common among teens [Side note: Did you know infant mortality is especially high among African American teens? Why do you think that is]
    • Not Addressing: Teen pregnancy is a major factor that is affecting our society as a whole and the consequences for not addressing this national issue are vast:
      • The financial cost for teen pregnancy is astounding. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2009), “preventing teen childbearing could save the United States about $9 billion per year.” 9 [Side Note: Need to find out where the costs are coming from - Medicaid? Emergency room? Adoption and Foster care? Any ideas?]
      • The National Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy (2006) stated that "teen Florida cost taxpayers (federal, state and local) at least $481 million in 2004" (The National Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy, 2006, pg. 1). "Between 1991 and 2004 there have been more than 354,100 teen births in Florida, costing taxpayers a total of $8.1 billion over that period" (Ibid.).
      • The social cost for teen pregnancy is enormous. According to the March of Dimes (2009), “teen mothers are more likely to drop out of high school than girls who delay childbearing, [as] only 40 percent of teenagers who have children before age 18 go on to graduate from high school, compared to 75 percent of teens from similar social and economic backgrounds who do not give birth until ages 20 or 21.”
      • In accordance to the lack of education, teen parents are not offered as many opportunities and may not possess the skills and/or knowledge to find and keep a job that provides enough income to support the family. This may lead the teen parents “to become financially dependent on family or on public assistance” (March of Dimes, 2009).

What do you think the urgency behind this societal problem is? All I have for this is the ECONOMY and the emotional health of teens and their children.

What do you feel the emotional appeal is behind this societal problem? [I am really not sure what the question is trying to get at, honestly. In this country, the life expectancy is much higher so teenagers are still considered children. We don't want our children having children because they are not yet prepared emotionally, mentally, financially, etc.] What do you think?

Thanks for your input!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Teen Pregnancy

So, I'm writing a grant proposal for class (HATE IT!) and I've decided to ask for money to start a county-wide program to help with TEEN PREGNANCY!

Polling the crowd: What are causes of teen pregnancy?

Here are some responses some of my colleagues and myself came up with. What are your thoughts?

· Lack of adequate and correct information about sexual health and birth control

· Lack of parental guidance and open communication on the topic of sex and healthy sexual decision making

· Lack of adult mentors and guidance on how to properly deal with peer pressure

· Drug and alcohol use

· Sex in the media and the misogynistic nature of popular music

· Biological changes, including a surge in hormones

· Low self-confidence and drive

· Religion

· Cultural differences (i.e. cultural perception of teen pregnancy)

· Low accountability for actions

· The need to receive unconditional love from a child because they may not be receiving it themselves