High teen pregnancy rate in NorMin alarms POPCOM

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CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, Philippines –Northern Mindanao’s teenage pregnancy rate is higher than the national average.

Commission on Population (POPCOM) Executive Director Juan Antonio Perez bared this on Wednesday, even as he called on parents to take an active role in addressing the problem.

Perez presented the results of the National Demographic Health Survey of 2017 together with local civil registrars and population officers here.

According to Perez, peer pressure coupled with the prevalence of social media and the lack of parental guidance were among the leading causes of high teen pregnancy in the region.

Based on the latest Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) survey, it was found out that 15 percent of teenagers in Northern Mindanao have started childbearing. The figure is higher than the national average of 8.6 percent.

“If there is parental guidance over television, there must also be parental supervision over social media,” Perez said, as he lauded the effort of the Cagayan de Oro City Council to enact vital pieices of local legislation such as the Parental Responsibility Code.

Another proposed law that is currently pending is the Comprehensive Children’s Code.
However, Perez said relevant local legislation must go hand-in-hand with good parenting that begins at home.

POPCOM, for its part, is looking to establish more local teen centers manned by experienced guidance counselors to address teen pregnancy, Perez said. -Mark D. Francisco/PNA

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