More Than 2 Million Girls Under 14 Give Birth Each Year


While teens are having fewer babies than ever, despite a major twerking epidemic, a new report by the United Nations reveals troubling statistics about young girls in developing countries, where 95% of births to girls under 18 occur.

According to the U.N. Population Fund, 7.3 million girls under 18 give birth annually in developing countries. But the report was particularly concerned about girls 14 and under—who account for 2 million of those births each year—as they face “the gravest long-term social and health consequences from giving birth as teens” like higher rates of death in childbirth, and other physical complications.

The U.N. said that the teen pregnancy rates in developing countries is a rights-violation issue, as girls that young get pregnant not by deliberate choice, but from “an absence of choices,” and a consequence of “little or no access to school, employment, quality information and health care.”

Accoring to the report:

Early pregnancies reflect powerlessness, poverty and pressures – from partners, peers, families and communities. And in too many instances, they are the result of sexual violence or coercion.

“Childhood must never be derailed by motherhood,” said the report, which put an emphasis on putting more effort into gender equality.

Image via Patricia Chumillas/Shutterstock

UN: More than 2 million girls under 14 give birth annually [CBS News]

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