In 2013, I received a reproductive reporting project grant from the Quixote Foundation to write about the grassroots revolution in teen sex-ed. The final piece, “The Empowerment Cure,” was jointly published by the Portland Mercury and Bitch. Here’s an excerpt:
While legislatures across the country have waged high-profile political battles over abortion politics, reproductive health advocates have made major progress under the radar by enabling women to control how and when they get pregnant in the first place.
In a country where reproductive-rights advocates are often too busy fighting political battles about pushing rights forward, the story of declining teen pregnancy rates is a case study in how the country can actually turn a worsening reality around. Figuring out what’s behind the drop in the Beaver State illuminates what has changed about teen sex in the country as a whole over the past six years.
The charts I put together for this article, with illustrator by Bethany Ng, have been extremely popular on Tumblr.