A farming county of California, Tulare has the second highest teenage pregnancy rate in America. About 18% of white teenagers are living below poverty line with their birth rate being about 50 for every 1,000, which is at the very least, ten times the lowest rate of birth in the nation where teens live over the poverty line.
Now, the people, who have to endure this relentless poverty and teen related pregnancy in the county of Tulare, are the Latino teens. School authorities affirm that it has more than 80% Hispanic students and these teenagers comprise about 70% of adolescent births occurring in the 15-18 year age bracket.
A great number of the adolescent girls are offspring’s of migrant farm labor and almost all of them live much under the poverty line. In the Tulare County, nearly 40% of the Latino girls are impoverished and the teenage pregnancy rate is above 100 for every 1000; this rate is more or less identical to teen pregnancy rates observed in most underdeveloped nations.
In fact, we do not need to visit underdeveloped nations to see the strong link between teenage pregnancy and acute poverty, which, according to experts, is primarily the core source of concern for teen pregnancy.
The rural population of California has for a long time put up with deprivation and socio-economic seclusion. The acute scarcity of adolescent reproductive health and therapeutic care service is the main reason for these circumstances; also, uncommon, are schemes such as school based teenage clinics and all-encompassing sex education facilities, which have been confirmed to be quite successful in fighting the ills of teen pregnancy elsewhere.
The high teenage pregnancy rate in this county of Tulare is indeed the direct outcome of this paucity of government funding. Obstacles because of the language and cultural issues also create difficulties, when attempting to empathize and converse with the Latino migrants and the seasonal farm labor in addition to other ethnic communities.
The Census Bureau states that in the county of Tulare, next to the high adolescent pregnancy rate, this region, when compared with the rest of the country, holds the dubious distinction of being ranked fifth, in terms of areas with a considerably high percentage of poverty.
Besides, it is in the third position, for having the greatest percentage of individuals, who do not even have a basic high school diploma. Within the state of California, the county of Tulare has the highest poverty percentage, joblessness, and paucity of education.
An alarming statistic is that nearly 2/3rds of the population below the age of eighteen in this county are below 200% of poverty, making this figure the highest in California; shockingly though, Tulare is the country’s major agricultural producer, even then, destitution and its consequences, like teenage pregnancy, in the county of Tulare, are highly uncontrolled.
There is a shocking absence of adequate medical facilities since there is no health insurance, poor socio-economic standing, and not enough resources in most migrant farm labor families. The inhabitants of this county have in effect been termed as Medically Underserved Population. Besides, a number of regions in the county are referred as primary care Health Professional Shortage Areas. Steps are under consideration to make available essential medical facilities, in addition to those concerned with women’s health and well-being, to this community.
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