Brum's Underage Mum Pregnancy Rate Shame

By Tony-larner@mrncouk, Tony Larner | Sunday Mercury (Birmingham, England), September 5, 1999 | Go to article overview

Brum's Underage Mum Pregnancy Rate Shame


Tony-larner@mrncouk, Tony Larner, Sunday Mercury (Birmingham, England)


FOUR girls under the age of 16 are falling pregnant in Birmingham every week, the Sunday Mercury can reveal.

The city's underage conception rate is 20 per cent higher than the national average.

And among the alarming statistics from Birmingham's Brook Advisory Centre, a family planning clinic, is one girl of just 12 who had an abortion earlier this year.

Britain has the highest teenage pregnancy rate in Western Europe at 8.9 per 1,000.

But pregnancy among girls in Birmingham stands at 10.9 per 1,000 - higher than Leeds and Liverpool as well as most London inner-city areas, including Camden and Islington.

Birmingham's Brook Advisory Centre spokeswoman Jan Deeming said: "There is no doubt we have a major teenage pregnancy problem. Statistics show an average of four under-16s a week are conceiving in Birmingham.

"Many of these young women are from deprived inner-city areas which is a major factor.

"Being a young single mum may carry a social stigma but to many being pregnant makes them feel special and gives them some kind of status.

"We offer free counselling to expectant teenage mums as well as confidential contraception advice. But it is vital contraception is made more freely available to these young girls - no matter what the age."

Last week, it emerged a 12-year-old Sheffield girl is expecting a baby - just six miles from where a girl of the same age gave birth days earlier. …

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