Texas CASA is proud to have partnered with Texans Care for Children over the last year as they researched and studied the issue of teen pregnancy in the Texas child welfare system. On April 16, Texans Care released their final report entitled Fostering Healthy Texas Lives: Strategies to Prevent Teen Pregnancy in Foster Care and Support Teen Parents in Foster Care. Coming at a time when state policymakers, the courts, the media and the Texas public are demanding improvements to the state’s foster care system, the report outlines recommendations for preventing teen pregnancy and supporting pregnant and parenting teens in foster care.
Some of the major research findings include the following:
- In a given year, one out of every 20 girls ages 13 to 17 in Texas foster care becomes pregnant.
- There are many missed opportunities to reduce the risk of teen pregnancy in foster care.
- New analysis shows that inadequate support for pregnant youth in foster care puts babies’ and mothers’ health at risk.
- The number of teen parents in foster care is low enough for the state to provide each of them ample support to be healthy and try to safely stay together if state leaders make it a priority.