"What we're doing has not been working," that's what Governor Phil Bryant said when he declared war on teen pregnancy. Mississippi remains among the highest in the country in the number of teen mothers, that despite many state programs to lower the teen birth rate.
Now, Governor Bryant has created a task force called Healthy Teens for a Better Mississippi. This new program hopes to succeed where others failed because it includes talking with teen parents to find out what interventions they believe could reach teens and stop them from getting pregnant.
Department of Human Services Executive Director Richard Berry said, "We're looking very strongly at if you already have a child, fine, we're going to love that child. We are going to try and help you with that child, but that doesn't mean you have others. Let's stop right here and try to break this cycle."
There is no quick solution, but the task force hopes to reduce teen pregnancies by 15% by 2017.
Maybe you don't think this affects your family, but when 155 million in state tax dollars goes to programs for teen pregnancy each year, it affects all of us.
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WLOX-TV General Manager
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