South African adolescents are having sex young, as much as parents, teachers and schools might not want to face that fact. Last week, one announcement by Minister in the Presidency Jeff Radebe went virtually unnoticed: that the Cabinet has just approved a strategy plan for dealing with adolescent sexual health and reproductive rights. It’s a plan which is being hailed by those in the know as both necessary and highly progressive. By REBECCA DAVIS.
When it comes to the sexual and reproductive health of South African adolescents, there is plenty to be concerned about. That’s one thing that the National Adolescent Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights Framework Strategy (NASRHRFS) makes clear. Drawing on research carried out over the past few years, it notes trends like an increasing amount of inter-generational sexual activity.
These “age-disparate” relationships – between younger women and older men – are associated with increased HIV rates for women between 15 and 24, who often seek out such partnerships because they are “helpful economically”.
The NASRHRFS also looks at the issue of teenage girls who fall pregnant, noting that only around a third go on to complete their education. Among young mothers there are high levels of…
Source : Daily Maverick