Rep. Hertel offered the following resolution:
House Resolution No. 51.
A resolution to declare March 22, 2019, as Youth Parenting Awareness Day in the state of Michigan.
Whereas, There were 5,307 births to teen mothers in Michigan in 2017, which accounted for 4.8% of all births in the state. In 2015, 17% of births to teens ages 15-19 were repeat births; and
Whereas, The state has shown commitment to supporting all individuals in their parenting responsibilities with the prior enactment of Parenting Awareness Month in March, yet there is no youth-specific parenting awareness day in Michigan that recognizes young parents and those who work with and support them; and
Whereas, Young parents deserve equal support, services, and resources as other parents to ensure the health and well-being of their children. Parenting is a choice and all individuals who elect to become parents should be respected in their choice; and
Whereas, Young parents often face additional hardships in educational achievement, employment opportunities, financial stability; dating, interpersonal, and sexual violence; mental health, housing access, child care services, and receiving quality maternal and infant health; and
Whereas, With support, young parents are more likely to finish high school, get their GED, pursue higher level education, achieve and retain employment, and maintain stable housing. Supporting young parents leads to better health and social outcomes for the children of young parents; and
Whereas, Current discourse of pregnancy prevention stigmatizes and marginalizes teen parents and does not accurately reflect the lived experiences of many young families. There are many young parents and families who are happy, healthy, and thriving; and
Whereas, Young parents are important contributing members within their communities across the state of Michigan; now, therefore, be it
Resolved by the House of Representatives, That the members of this legislative body declare March 22, 2019, as Michigan Youth Parenting Awareness Day in the state of Michigan.