Saturday, May 21, 2022

Play

The election fraud movement resurfaces on the campaign trail, Vice President Harris and abortion providers discuss an action plan, and as New Mexico's wildfires rage, nearby states face high fire danger.

Play

Pennsylvania's Republican U.S. Senate Primary still too close to call, a $40 billion Ukraine aid bill is headed to President Biden's desk, and Oklahoma passes the strictest abortion bill in the country.

Play

From off-Broadway to West Virginia: the stories of the deadly Upper Big Branch mine explosion, baby formula is on its way back to grocery shelves, and federal funds will combat consolidation in meatpacking.

New Council Gives Michigan Young Parents a Voice

Play

Monday, January 11, 2021   

LANSING, Mich. -- The voices of expectant and parenting youths are being amplified by the first-ever Michigan Young Parent Advisory Council.

Diamond Weakley is among the 13 teens on the council, which is based in Saginaw. She said the group is reducing the stigma and isolation she's experienced as a young parent.

"A lot of families don't support youths having children before graduating. So it makes us feel better about becoming young parents and keeping our kids instead of listening to everybody about how hard parenting may be," Weakley said.

Council Facilitator Robert Clark, a case manager at Saginaw Intermediate School District, said one of their first projects was to raise awareness about the lack of spaces where parents can change a baby's diaper in women's and men's public restrooms.

"So their next objective is to let these companies know why it's important to have a baby changing station in their restaurant or facility," Clark said.

The program is supported by the Michigan Organization on Adolescent Sexual Health through funding from the National Institute for Reproductive Health. Council members are compensated for their time and efforts, including child care during meetings.

Clark said it's important to support and empower young parents as they work toward their goals, and to ensure they feel respected.

"And let them know it's OK to ask for help and they are heard when they do need anything," he said. "Because they are young parents, they feel like a lot of older adults talk down at them instead of talking with them on their level."

Teen mothers and fathers are at higher risk of dropping out of school and living in poverty, and have higher incidences of repeat births. Weakley agreed being a young parent is hard, but said her daughter is worth it.

"When I look at her and I see her smile, it just makes me want to live better," Weakley said. "Honestly, without my daughter, I don't think I would have graduated high school. I try to do everything that I want to see her do in her future so that she can say, 'Well, my mom did it, so I can do it.'"

Research shows when young parents are supported, they are better able to finish high school, pursue higher-level education and find employment.


get more stories like this via email

Over the past two years, pro-democracy groups say more than 30 states have proposed nearly 230 laws viewed as an attempt to undermine elections. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

Examples of proposed policies and candidates tied to false claims of election fraud have spread to Minnesota, and a new national report found the …


Environment

New Mexico continues to battle the largest wildfires in its history, and other states including Nevada, along with parts of Arizona and Colorado…

Social Issues

A new museum exhibition in Baltimore opening to the public today aims to tell the story of Maryland's fight for civil rights, both in the past and …


The Federation of Virginia Food Banks' seven regional food banks distributed approximately 165 million pounds of food in 2021. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

Virginia's food banks are facing a perfect storm of issues. High inflation for everyday goods is driving up food costs for lower-income families…

Health and Wellness

Vice President Kamala Harris met with abortion providers from Missouri and other restrictive states Thursday to consider ways the Biden administration…

The fatality rate for Black bike riders is 30% higher than for white bike riders, according to the League of American Bicyclists. (Adobe Stock)

Health and Wellness

Today is National Bike to Work Day, and while it may sound "easier said than done," it may not be as daunting as you think. Enthusiasts said the …

Environment

Connecticut is celebrating its first estuary reserve, which will help identify environmental threats to waterways and natural resources. …

Health and Wellness

A new report urges states to take steps to minimize Medicaid coverage loss when the state of emergency for the pandemic comes to an end. COVID …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021