7 Mar 2013

Solomons urged to help with contraception among teens

4:13 pm on 7 March 2013

A New Zealand MP Maryan Street says her counterparts in Solomon Islands could make a real difference to escalating teen pregnancies if they invest in effective contraception services.

As the Vice Chair of the New Zealand Parliamentarians' Group on Population and Development, Ms Street is in Honiara to launch a report into adolescent sexual health after a Pacific-wide forum in Wellington last year.

She says contraceptive education is the key to preventing pregnancies but reaching teenagers early is problematic as 70 per cent of them don't attend high school.

She says she would like to see the politicians step in and stop the practise of expelling pregnant girls from school.

"And that's something that could be addressed by MP's saying to the schools 'This isn't fair.' The boys who are the fathers of these children are allowed to continue with their education but the girls are expelled and are told not to come back. And so they drop out of the system altogether."

Maryan Street says investing in contraception advice gives a ten-fold economic return.