Chart of the Day: New Mexico wins worst teen pregnancy rate in America
Guttmacher released its review of teen pregnancy rates in the United States. Among their findings: “In 2008, New Mexico had the highest teenage pregnancy rate (93 pregnancies per 1,000 women aged 15–19); the next highest rates were in Mississippi, Texas, Nevada, Arkansas and Arizona. The lowest rates were in New Hampshire (33 per 1,000), Vermont, Minnesota, North Dakota and Massachusetts.”
It seems obvious, but states that have good sex education and easier access to contraception tend to have lower teen pregnancy rates, while states that try to cut off access to those things have higher teen pregnancy rates.
Guttmacher also found that the teen birth rate, or the rate of teens carrying pregnancies to term, was highest in Mississippi. That state is also down to just one abortion clinic, which has been facing closure due to new state requirements in recent months. Interestingly, Mississippi is an excellent case study in the phenomenon Naomi Cahn and June Carbone wrote about in Slate earlier this year, in which they noted that the pro-life movement seemed to lead to more single moms.