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Chicago Teen Pregnancy Effort Enters Next Chapter

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(CBS) – A little more than a year ago, Chicago public health leaders got attention across the country with a provocative series of bus ads and billboards that showed teenage boys with bare pregnant bellies.

City Public Health Director Dr. Bechara Choucair says those images — which got picked up across the country — were designed to do one thing: start the conversation about the impact of teen pregnancy on children and families.

Now, the department is well into the follow-up campaign: which shows a teenage boy holding a giant baby.

Chicago Teen Pregnancy Effort Enters Next Chapter

big baby2 Chicago Teen Pregnancy Effort Enters Next Chapter
WBBM 780/105.9FM

The images are different, but Dr. Choucair says their aim is the same: to spread the word about how having a baby too young can hurt a child’s future.

“The daughters of teen moms are three times more likely to become teen moms themselves, and the sons of teen moms are twice as likely to end up in prison,” he says.

The most recent figures show that Chicago’s teen pregnancy rates have dropped 33-percent for the period ending in 2010, and Dr. Choucair says he’s working with the state to get more recent trend numbers so that they can get an idea of how their messaging strategies are actually working.

“This is my number-one agenda in my conversation with the state,” he tells WBBM.