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ERIC Number: ED056356
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1971-Aug
Reference Count: 0
Adolescent Pregnancy and Poverty: Implications for Social Policy.
Johnson, Clara L.
Adolescent pregnancy is examined from 2 viewpoints: (1) the marital status of young adolescent girls who become mothers at a too young age is less relevant to the social problem of adolescent pregnancy than the attendant adverse effects, i.e., adolescent pregnancy, per se, rather than illegitimacy is the social problem; and (2) too early marriage and/or child rearing predispose young girls to disadvantages which are directly related to poverty conditions. Data from Vital Statistics Reports and from empirical studies are utilized to establish similarities between married and unwed teenage girls with respect to fertility patterns, socioeconomic level, and access to life's choices. The presumed relationship between too early marriage and/or child rearing and the incidence of poverty is noted from the standpoint of (a) decreased time and energy and/or lack of opportunity for continued educational pursuits, (b) low, income level, and (c) excess fertility. The"high risks" of pregnancy and childbearing to young girls and their infants is also considered. These major conclusions are drawn: (1) in relation to poverty, the timing of the first birth may be of greater strategic importance than the ultimate size of the family; and (2) adolescent pregnancy is far less a moral problem than it is a socioeconomic and health problem. (Author)
Publication Type: N/A
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Regional Inst. of Social Welfare Research, Athens, GA.
Note: Paper presented at annual meetings of The Society for the Study of Social Problems, Denver, Colo., August 28-29, 1971