To honor National Teen Pregnancy Prevention Day
(May 6th), RH Reality Check hosted an audio press conference with
four experts and advocates on teen pregnancy prevention and comprehensive sex
to the audio media conference here:
After more than a decade of decline, both teen
pregnancy rates and the overall number of teen births in the United States have
started rising again throughout the country, erasing hard-won gains. As the National Campaign for the Prevention
of Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy notes, the rise in teen pregnancy rates is the
result of, among other things:
- More sex and less contraception;
Declining concerns among teens about HIV
and AIDS and other sexually transmitted infections;
Changing demographics in the populations
- Lack of funding for effective programs.
To examine these and other issues, the following
experts joined RH Reality Check for their audio conference call:
Bill Albert, Chief Program Officer of The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy,
a private, non-profit initiative organized in 1996 that focuses on preventing
both teen pregnancy and unplanned pregnancy among single, young adults.
Lori Casillas, Executive Director of the
Colorado Organization on Adolescent Pregnancy, Parenting, and Prevention
(COAPPP), a statewide organization that works with communities and individuals
in Colorado to promote the healthy sexual and reproductive development of all
teens and advance the well-being of parenting teens.
Forrest Alton, Executive Director of the
South Carolina Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy, which reaches over 1,000
people in each of South Carolina’s 46 counties on an annual basis with
education, technical assistance, public awareness campaigns, advocacy, and
Shelby Knox who grew up as a conservative
Southern Baptist in Texas and turned toward activism in response to what she
saw as the danger of abstinence-only-until marriage programs. Shelby, who recently graduated from the
University of Texas at Austin with a degree in Political Science, has traveled
across the nation to speak to young people about the importance of
comprehensive sex education and the power of youth activism, using the film
that carries her name, The Education of
Shelby Knox, as a vehicle for discussion. She currently lives in New York City
and is a full time speaker and organizer working with progressive organizations
to promote sex education, women’s rights, and youth empowerment.
Weren’t able to make the call?
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