Teenage pregnancy rates remain high in Croydon despite a national drive, the council admitted.
The Government’s Teenage Pregnancy Strategy was launched 11 years ago, and was designed to cut the under-18 conception rate by half. However, Croydon, among London’s worst areas for teenage pregnancies, has failed to meet the target.
NHS Croydon and the local council have spent almost a decade trying to dramatically reduce the number of pregnant teens. But they have seen only seen a slight decline.
With 41.7 pregnancies per 1000 teenage girls, England has one of the highest rates in the western world. At 54.6 per 1000 girls, Croydon’s rate for 2008/09 was even higher.
The council-authored report says Croydon has been slow to make an impact on teenage conception rates compared with the rest of the country.
Its authors blame social deprivation factors such as low income, poor parenting and education and low aspirations.