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Health Place. 2011 Sep;17(5):1054-60. doi: 10.1016/j.healthplace.2011.06.009. Epub 2011 Jul 22.

Social inequality and young pregnancy: the causal attributions of young parents in London, UK.

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1
Department of Psychology, Kingston University, Penrhyn Road, Kingston, Surrey KT1 2EE, UK. debbie.smith-2@manchester.ac.uk

Abstract

Although the association between young pregnancy and the socio-economic environment is globally recognised, little is understood about either the processes behind it or how young parents construe this relationship. Twenty-one semi-structured interviews were conducted in four London areas; two 'less deprived' and two 'more deprived' in order to solicit young parent's views. Thematic analysis uncovered three factors indicative of how young parents understand the social gradient in young pregnancy; the parental relationship status (openness and parental control); access to education and career; and acceptance of young pregnancy. It is suggested that differing representations of young parenthood across socio-economic subgroups correspond to differing representations, values and beliefs concerning sexual and reproductive behaviour, education and the social acceptability of young pregnancy. Further work is needed to build up a holistic picture of the influence place has on young people's sexual and reproductive health.

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