op-ed

Shameful New Teen Pregnancy Ads

Shameful to mothers, shameful to children, shameful to the City of New York. posted on

Mommy, WHY DID YOU HAVE ME?

Think about a struggling single mother and her 10 year-old son who she had at 18 seeing this poster on the subway.

The new city government campaign, which just launched this week, is extremely shortsighted.

Guilting people is not an effective strategy. It’s a strategy that has been used time and time again nationwide in government anti-drug campaigns, and time and time again, has not worked. And this new campaign is no different and offers no solutions.

Mayor Bloomberg’s office spent over $400,000 producing the subway and bus stop ads, despite the fact that the city’s teen pregnancy rate has dropped by 27 percent in the last 10 years, according to New York City’s Department of Health and Mental Hygiene.

Planned Parenthood and other groups have already blasted the ads.

Haydee Morales, vice president for education and training at Planned Parenthood of New York City, said the organization was “shocked and taken aback” by the tone of the new campaign.

“Hurting and shaming communities is not what’s going to bring teen pregnancy rates down.” She said that the campaign’s message — that teenage pregnancy leads to poverty — was backward. “It’s not teen pregnancies that cause poverty, but poverty that causes teen pregnancy,” Morales said.

Here’s Planned Parenthood’s official statement.

More of the new ads below.

Putting hurtful words (via some marketing writer) in a baby’s mouth — particularly shameful.

Hitting dad.

Check out more articles on BuzzFeed.com!

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