JACKSON, Miss. — Childbearing teens in Mississippi cost taxpayers about $137 million a year. That research was done by the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy between 1991 and 2010.
“What we are talking about when we talk about public cost or taxpayer costs are any number of things that make some common sense. For example, Medicaid costs, health insurance for children, and loss tax revenue,” said Bill Albert Chief Program Officer at the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy.
“Teen girls are far more likely to become teen mothers if they had a teen mother themselves, there are generational consequences. We have also found that the sons of teen mothers tend to be incarcerated at a much higher level than those born to older mothers.”
In the last 20 years teen pregnancy has gone down at least 36 percent in Mississippi.
In 2012 Governor Phil Bryant began the Teen Pregnancy Task Force in an effort reduce teen pregnancy in Mississippi. Part of that program including the passing of a law in 2013 which mandates DNA collection from the umbilical cords of teen mothers to identify who the father is so they can be held responsible.