From the Minnesota Department of Health:
Teen pregnancy is a critical public health issue that affects the health, educational, social, and economic status of teen parents, their children, families and communities.
In 2012, there were 4,469 teen pregnancies in Minnesota. Minnesota's youth of color have significantly higher birth and pregnancy rates than their white counterparts.
The cost of teen pregnancy and childbearing impacts society as a whole. It is estimated that the public cost to Minnesota taxpayers is approximately $146 million per year.
Comprehensive, evidenced-based sexuality education and effective and culturally responsive teen pregnancy prevention programs help prevent teen pregnancy. By supporting healthy youth development and encouraging open communication between caring adults and teens, we can support and affirm their choices to avoid pregnancy, finish high school, and enjoy happy and fulfilling lives.
While the continuing decline in teen pregnancy in this country is good news, we still have work to do. Thankfully, Governor Dayton knows what we know: that access to birth control and comprehensive sex education works.
Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest provider of sex ed, offers resources, guidance, and encouragement to teens and parents to talk about relationships and sex. Every year across the nation, Planned Parenthood provides educational programs to more than a million people of all ages, and every day, Planned Parenthood works in schools and communities to provide high-quality sex education programs.
HOLLY HARRISON, WEB EDITOR AND SOCIAL MEDIA COORDINATOR