Midday Coffee Break

What’s up?

The U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill — along party lines — to give federal employees four weeks of paid leave for the birth or adoption of a child, according to Salon Broadsheet. Republican Pete Sessions of Texas sarcastically said, “Maybe we just ought to let federal employees take 16 years off.” Whatever. If the bill clears the Senate, President Barack Obama is expected to sign it into law.  

In somewhat related news, employers in England are laying off women in pregnancy or on maternity leave at an alarming rate that it has set off a barrage of discrimination lawsuits, according to the Guardian.

Here is some welcomed news: A large study published in the New England Journal of Medicine has found that women who take the anti-nausea drug Metoclopramide for morning sickness do not risk harm to their babies, according to the Associated Press.

Texas has become a minority-majority state due to the explosion of Hispanics in the border towns, according to the Laredo Morning Times.

In other news from Texas: Homeschooling parents and child protection advocates are at odds over a child abuse bill in the state legislature, according to the Austin American-Statesman.

What else is in the news? What’s up with you?


British Health Officials Create Shocking Video to Stem Teen Pregnancy

Public health officials in the city of Leicester, England, created a graphic video, which has gone viral on YouTube, about a teenaged girl giving birth in front of all her peers at school, according to the Associated Press.

Organizers said Wednesday that the video, filmed to look as if it were shot on another student’s cell phone, had received more than 250,000 hits.

The video shows a girl in a school uniform screaming in agony while jeering children jostle for a close look, while another girl trying to fend them off is helping deliver the baby.

The video ends with the caption: “Not what you expected? Being a teenage parent might not be either.”

Students who considered the public school system’s sex education “preachy” offered suggestions to help create the video, officials said.

About one in 20 teenaged Leicester girls is pregnant, about 8 times higher than the country average, according to AP.

There are about 50 conceptions per 1,000 girls between the ages of 15 and 17 in Leicester City, eight more than the country’s average, according to statistics provided by Leicester City public health officials.

verall, Britain’s teen-pregnancy rates are among the highest in Europe and one recent report indicated that they are on the rise, specifically in England and Wales.

The government and educators have been trying to address the problem by distributing condoms in some schools, creating a sex-education program for the youngest elementary-school students and instituting a pilot program to distribute birth-control pills without a prescription.

What do you think of Leicester’s video?