April 29, 2011
Preventing Unplanned Teen Pregnancies is Possible and Valuable One of the largest drains on our society is the cost associated with unplanned pregnancies, especially those in teenagers. With the proper implementation of preventative programs, these costs could be lower or alleviated all together. While the United States teen pregnancy rate fell in 2009, it was calculated in a 2006 report by Saul Hoffman, that teen childbearing cost taxpayers at least $9.1 billion (The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy). Preventative programs along with parents and adults having open conversations with teens about these newly famous reality mothers could go a long way to help stop teen pregnancy.
States spend a huge amount of money every year due to unplanned pregnancies. Some of the costs that add up due to these pregnancies are a result of the use of welfare programs, judicial systems and health care (Foreman). Federal money is available for states to improve existing programs and create new ones; each state is responsible for applying for these funds. Some of these funds require a state to match, while some does not. Unfortunately not all states are taking advantage of these opportunities.
It is imperative that states take this opportunity to request these funds, to implement programs which can lower the bottom line on the cost of unplanned pregnancies. There are a variety of grants available which could focus on almost every philosophy, whether it is on proper contraceptive use or abstinence. Some states are refusing to apply for the money because of concerns that teaching about the proper use of contraceptives could promote sexual activity or send mixed signals, which Texas Representative Donna Howard calls, “erroneous” and is “baffled” (Foreman).
The national campaign to prevent teen and unplanned pregnancy offers a wealth of information and programs that delay sexual initiation, improve contraceptive use among...
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