Episode Information

Teen Pregnancy Prevention
Where We Live - with John Dankosky
Aired:
01/16/2008
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In this episode:

Teen birth rate numbers are on the rise again, after a decade of decline.

 

Episode Audio

52:00 minutes (24.96 MB)
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Dr. Kurt Myers, Health Director for the Hartford Public Schools: Photo by Lauren HouseDr. Kurt Myers, Health Director for the Hartford Public Schools: Photo by Lauren HouseBetween 1991 and 2005 the National Center for Health Statistics found that the birth rate among 15 to 19 year old girls dropped some 34 percent. It was a major success story for U.S. health policy. Then, in the last few years, an unexpected 3 percent jump.

Experts are split on the reasons why, but many point to the administration's funding of abstinence-only sex-education programs, which get some $176 million a year in federal funding. Critics of the programs say that by only stressing abstinence, they are being blind to the realities that many children are sexually active and, they say, only education and contraception can help reverse the trend.RoseAnne Bilodeau, founder and Executive Director of Greater New Britain Teen Pregnancy Prevention, Inc: Photo by Lauren HouseRoseAnne Bilodeau, founder and Executive Director of Greater New Britain Teen Pregnancy Prevention, Inc: Photo by Lauren House

 

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I just wanted to quickly add my two cents concerning your teen pregnancy story.
I went to middle and high school in North Carolina. Now, this may just be a southern thing (which is far more conservative than up north), but none of my health teachers were allowed to teach sex education. We had to skip those chapters in our health books, and the teachers could not answer any questions about contraception. At least down in the south, I think this could be part of the problem.

Thanks,
Logan Hasson
Cheshire, CT