POSTED: Tuesday, March 1, 2011 - 6:00pm
UPDATED: Wednesday, November 21, 2012 - 10:09am
TEXAS-- The latest counts show teen pregnancy rates are going down across the country, but in Texas, that rate continues to be one of the highest.
Texas has the third highest teen birth rate in the nation, and it costs taxpayers about a billion dollars every year.
Elizabeth Harris was looking for love when she wound up pregnant. She says, "I think teen girls are really desiring that [love], and they need to find it somewhere else....not from the arms of a guy."
Aimee Crowl says it's the behavior, not the babies that are the problem. "Teen sexuality before marriage is the problem. If we can nip that in the bud and talk to them about how damaging it is to their heart, that is really what is going to make a difference."
Planned Parenthood says more education and birth control would help. "I think it's incredibly irresponsible to say 'Don't have sex because it's a sin' rather than telling kids the truth... the scientific truth," says one Planned Parenthood official. The Texas Education Code doesn't require public schools to teach sex education at all, and a study says 94 percent of Texas schools teach abstinence-only sex education.
Crowl says implementing sex education will only make the problem worse. "I feel like it's giving kids a license to do something that is damaging to them," she says.