the role of race in teen pregnancies

Fewer teen births in Texas still too many, advocates say
Rate is higher than other states, despite increased abstinence and contraceptive use

— reported by the Houston Chronicle

Teen pregnancies have been declining for more than a decade in Texas and Harris County, reflecting a nationwide trend that’s attributed to more young people delaying sex and more using effective contraception.

Still, teens here are more likely to have babies than their peers in many other parts of the country, prompting people who work with Houston’s youth to call for continued vigilance.

However…

Teen pregnancies, here and nationwide, are characterized by sharp racial differences.

In 2003, for example, black teens in Texas were more than twice as likely as their white peers to have a baby. And Hispanics were more than 3 1/2 times as likely as Anglos to give birth in their teen years.

Public health experts in Houston and elsewhere say the disparity is influenced by a wide range of issues, including social, cultural, educational, economic and religious factors. The high numbers in Texas, they say, are strongly influenced by the state’s sizable population of Hispanic immigrants.

Uh huh… OK. So the only reason that Texas’ numbers are so high is because of immigrants. And the fact that, perhaps, we aren’t doing our part to educate them on their options has nothing to do with that. Yeah… right.

Author: Paloma Cruz

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