A Typical Day In North Carolina
Special Report - September 11, 2009
There were an average of 151 births to unmarried women, and 41 births to older teens (ages 15 to 19) every day in North Carolina in 2008, according to the latest data from the State Center for Health Statistics (SCHS). The annual report, “A Typical Day in North Carolina,” shows that there were a total of 54,952 births to unmarried women in the state in 2008 (up from 53,848 in 2007), for an average of 151 births per day. Births to 15 to 19 year old girls in 2008 totaled 15,128, which is an average of 41 teen births each day. This is about the same as births to teens in this age group in 2007 (15,061 total). Additionally, the SCHS reports that there were a total of 235 births to 10-14 year-old girls in 2008. The youngest mother to give birth in North Carolina in 2008 was age 11, and the youngest father was age 14.
As we reported previously, births to unmarried women have increased substantially in the United States, by almost 20 percent since 2002, according to the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS). Equally as troubling, after declining 34 percent between 1991 and 2005, the teen birth rate (births per 1,000 teens age 15 to 19) increased for the first time in 15 yearsby three percent in 2006. Between 2005 and 2007, the teen birth rate increased five percent nationally (it increased three percent nationwide and about two percent in North Carolina between 2006 and 2007). Teens accounted for 23 percent of all nonmarital births in 2007, with six out of seven births to unmarried teens.
“These numbers from the SCHS reinforce the importance of authentic abstinence until marriage education for young people,” said Bill Brooks, president of the North Carolina Family Policy Council. “Sexual abstinence until marriage is the only sure way to avoid all the consequences of early sexual activity, including unplanned pregnancy and out-of-wedlock births. Despite the General Assembly’s enactment of the ‘Healthy Youth Act’which mandates more instruction on contraceptives in the classroomabstinence remains a core part of sex education in North Carolina. Students are still required to be taught that abstinence from sexual activity outside of marriage is the expected standard of behavior for all school-age children. We need to ensure that sex education continues to be taught by well-trained AUM educators so that young people get the critical message that postponing sexual activity until marriage is the healthiest choice they can make for their future.”
Copyright © 2009. North Carolina Family Policy Council. All rights reserved.