British Government Program Doubles Teen Pregnancy Rate |

TBC Staff

The British government, recognizing that England has the highest rate of teen pregnancy in Europe, decided to take a radical approach.  Instead of pushing abstinence and encouraging intact families, the government decided to teach teenage girls how to have sex and give them condoms.  However, this approach has backfired on the British government -- it has doubled pregnancy rates in that country.

[From the London Daily Mail Online (Martin, July 8, 2009)]: “A multi-million pound initiative to reduce teenage pregnancies more than doubled the number of girls conceiving.

“The Government-backed scheme tried to persuade teenage girls not to get pregnant by handing out condoms and teaching them about sex.

“But research funded by the Department of Health shows that young women who attended the programme, at a cost of £2,500 each, were ’significantly’ more likely to become pregnant than those on other youth programmes who were not given contraception and sex advice.

“A total of 16 per cent of those on the Young People’s Development Programme conceived compared with just 6 per cent in other programmes.”

Interestingly enough, the British approach was modeled on a New York program launched in 2004 which claimed to have significantly reduced teenage pregnancies by preparing girls to have commitment-free sex.  Successive efforts to duplicate this program elsewhere in the U.S. have failed, just as the program in Britain.  These failures have certainly cast "doubt on the [New York] project as a whole."