When it comes to our children having children of their own in Alabama, there appears to be good news to report. From its peak in 1973, the percent of births to teens in Alabama has declined by 58 percent. Since 2000, there has been a 32 percent decline in teen births.
In 2011, Alabama's teenage birth rate fell to a historic low rate of 20.9 per 1,000 females ages 10 to 19. That is just 6,697 births to teen mothers, according to the Center for Health Statistics of the Alabama Department of Public Health. The percent of births to teens as a percent of all births is 11.3. Another record low was the percent of births to young teens, those less than age 18. That statistic fell to just 3.5 percent of live births. The pregnancy rate is 29.6 per 1,000 females ages 10-19. That is a 25 percent drop since 2002.
Jamie Keith, executive director of the Alabama Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy, said, "We celebrate this important achievement and believe that when young people are provided opportunities to build their knowledge and skills about ways to avoid sexual risk-taking behavior they are less likely to engage in those behaviors. I encourage Alabama communities to invest in community and school-based programs that ensure young people have access to medically accurate and age-appropriate sexual health education programs. With this investment we will continue to see declines in the number of unintended pregnancies to Alabama teens."
For more information about Alabama Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy, call (334) 265-8004.