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Claims about teen pregnancy rebutted by expert

3 March 2015

David Paton is Professor of Industrial Economics at Nottingham University Business School

Claims that falls in teenage pregnancies are the result of the previous Labour government's Teenage Pregnancy Strategy (TPS) have been rebutted.

David Paton, professor of industrial economics at Nottingham University Business School, made the rebuttal following the release of official statistics which suggest that teenage pregnancy rates are at a record low. [BBC, 24 Feb] Professor Paton commented: "It is completely implausible that the TPS is behind this effect. If anything, the evidence is the opposite: for the first 8 years of the TPS there was very little change in underage conceptions. Just as the TPS was winding down and complaints were being made about cuts to teenage pregnancy services, rates started to go down significantly.

"The further we get from the TPS, the faster the decrease accelerates! There is little doubt that education in schools has been the key, along with demographic change and also the general shift towards less risk taking behaviour amongst teenagers (lower rates of smoking, drugs, alcohol and crime)."

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