Study: schools that give away condoms see more teen births, not fewer

In the early 1990s, with panic over the AIDS epidemic rising, hundreds of school districts began making condoms more accessible to students. The hope was to encourage students to practice safe sex and better protect themselves from sexually transmitted diseases.

A new research paper suggests that decision may have backfired. It finds that access to condoms in school led to a 10 percent increase in teen births. The effects were concentrated in schools that offered condoms with no required counseling. Those schools also saw that gonorrhea rates for women rose following the condom programs.

Is anyone really surprised by this?

For the mechanism (in the remote case you were not already aware of it, it’s the creation of what Roissy terms a Playa’s Paradise), see this paper by Janet Yellen and her husband.