Strengthening Teen Pregnancy Prevention, Adolescent Sexual Health and Youth Empowerment by Effectively Addressing Relationship Violence

10/16/2012 - 1:00pm to 5:00pm
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FISA Foundation
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Adolescent relationship abuse is prevalent and associated with poor sexual health outcomes. This presentation will review research on relationship abuse and discuss implications for adolescent pregnancy prevention and sexual health promotion. One potential mechanism linking adolescent relationship abuse with unintended pregnancy is male partners’ control of women’s reproduction (reproductive coercion) through active interference with contraception (birth control sabotage), behaviors to promote pregnancy (pregnancy pressure), and attempts to control the outcomes of a pregnancy (pregnancy coercion). This presentation will review qualitative and quantitative studies on partner violence and reproductive coercion, including data from a pilot intervention study in family planning clinics and school health centers. Implications of research findings for both clinic-based interventions and prevention of adolescent relationship abuse and unintended pregnancy will be discussed. Learning objectives:

  1. To describe the dynamics of adolescent relationship abuse and reproductive coercion and impact on adolescent sexual health
  2. To discuss clinic and community-based intervention strategies to promote healthy relationships, improve adolescent sexual health, and reduce unintended pregnancy
  3. To identify opportunities for relationship abuse prevention and intervention in clinical and community-based settings

 Intended Audience:This program is designed for program directors and direct service staff who work with adolescents (both young women and young men). It will provide a framework that is new to southwestern Pennsylvania, but has proven effective in other regions. About the presenter:Dr. Elizabeth Miller is Chief of Adolescent Medicine at Children’s Hospital Pittsburgh, the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. Trained in medical anthropology as well as Internal Medicine and Pediatrics, Dr. Miller’s research has included examination of sex trafficking among adolescents in Asia, teen dating abuse, and reproductive health, with a focus on underserved youth populations including pregnant and parenting teens, foster, homeless, and gang-affiliated youth. Her current research focuses on the impact of gender-based violence on young women’s reproductive health. She has participated in numerous legislative hearings related to protecting adolescent confidentiality, adolescent reproductive health, and dating abuse. Her work on reproductive coercion and birth control sabotage has been featured in the New York Times, and she was also on the Oprah Winfrey show as a national expert on teen dating violence (at the time Chris Brown assaulted Rihanna). She has conducted research in partnership with Planned Parenthood in Northern California (funded by the National Institutes of Health), pilot testing a brief clinical intervention to address partner violence and reproductive coercion in reproductive health care settings, which has led to a large NIH-funded randomized trial in Western Pennsylvania. In addition, she is conducting a study of a sexual violence prevention program entitled “Coaching Boys into Men” which involves training high school coaches to talk to their male athletes about stopping violence against women, funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. She is also involved in projects to reduce gender-based violence and improve women’s health in India, Japan, and Kenya.

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