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Threats To Girlhood


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hreats to Girlhood include all of the issues, mindsets, factors, trends, and circumstances that impact girls’ lifelong health, wellness, happiness, and ability to succeed. Identifying current Threats to Girlhood is an important step towards advancing the wellbeing of girls, the possibilities for women, and the strength of communities.

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merging research on the state of girlhood highlights the interconnection of girlhood threats. Education and poverty, body image issues and advertising, sexual abuse and selfharm, conformism and commercialism; the issues threatening our girls aren’t isolated and unrelated. Radically reducing Threats to Girlhood will require that we, collectively, work to improve all the interconnected causes along the way, not just the side effects.

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o one single parent, politician, celebrity role model, company, organization, product, publication, or advertisement is solely responsible for the development of girlhood threats. We are all, however, responsible for the ways in which we contribute to these threats or fail to contribute to their solution. Radically reducing Threats to Girlhood requires a holistic solution: an out-ofthe-box and into-the-hands-of decision-makers a

solution that takes the whole girl, the world she lives in, and the interconnection of the threats facing her, all into account.

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his report is certainly not exhaustive, but we hope it will help show the scope of the problem and the urgent need for a new perspective. Because Threats to Girlhood are continually changing, shifting, and evolving, this is an ongoing project intended to continue addressing threats and working towards solutions.

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e believe that research shouldn’t be remanded to vaults and scholarly journals, so if your research helps identify a Threat to Girlhood or a solution to a girlhood threat, we hope you’ll pass it along for possible inclusion in the report. Please send your stats, facts, and insights on girlhood threats, along with a copy of the published research or report in which the insights appear, to Mary Jayne Zemer at MaryJayne@SeriousPlayforSeriousGirls.com.

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Threats to Girlhood

Table of Contents

State of Being Media, Television, & Hyper-Sexualization Self-Esteem,Wellness, Weight, & Body Image “Diva-ization” & Consumerization Conformism Women in Leadership Athletics & Physical Activity Family Poverty Education Sexuality, Contraception, Pregnancy, & Sexually Transmitted Diseases Rape, Sexual Harrassment, Violence, & Abuse Human Trafficking Substance Abuse Reckless Driving Habits c

1 5 15 25 29 33 39 43 47 53 57 63 71 77 88 d


Threats to Girlhood

Threats to Girlhood

Girls that are mathematically inclined are less interested in math if their fathers believe that girls aren’t wired for math. 1 43% of girls think they are too shy to succeed in a leadership position.2 Girls who smoke tend to have a positive image of smokers, which can come from “advertising, celebrities, or other role models. This positive image may overcome any concerns about the health risks.”3

State of Being

Approximately 1 in 5 female high school students report being physically and/or sexually abused by a dating partner.4 Over 1/3 of women between the ages of 18 and 25 would “rather be mean or stupid than be fat.”5 The percentage of young girls “participating in groupon-group fights increased from 13.5 percent in 2002 to 16.8 percent in 2003.”6

1 Jacobs, Janis E., et al. “‘I can, but I don’t want to’: Impact of Parents, Interests, and Activities on Gender Differences in Math”. In: Gender Differences in Mathematics: An Integrative Psychological Approach. Ed. Ann M. Gallagher. Cambridge: Cambride U. P., 2005. 2 Girl Scout Research Institute. “Change It Up: What Girls Say About Redefining Leadership.” 2008, p.19. 3 National Research Center for Women and Families. “Smoking and Girls: A Deadly Mix.” http://www.center4research.org/smoking.html 4 Silverman, Jay G.; Raj, Anita; Mucci, Lorelei A.; and Jeanne E. Hathaway. “Dating Violence Against Adolescent Girls and Associated Substance Use, Unhealthy Weight Control, Sexual Risk Behavior, Pregnancy, and Suicidality.” Journal of the American Medical Association, August 1, 2001, Vol 286, No. 5, p. 572-579. 5 Martin, Courtney. “Perfect girls, Starving Daughters: The Frightening New Normalcy of Hating Your Body.” New York: The Free Press, 2007. In: End Fat Talk. “Stats.” http:// www.endfattalk.org/stats.html 6 SAMHSA National Mental Health Information Center. “The NSDUH Report: Female Youths and Delinquent Behaviors.” November 5, 2004. http://www.oas.samhsa.gov/2k4/ girldelinquents/girldelinquents.htm 1

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Threats to Girlhood 7

Threats to Girlhood

Girl Guiding UK has found that girls as young as ten are suffering from stress resulting from cultural pressure to grow up too quickly.8 In 2009, a report on behalf of Stirling University’s Suicidal Behaviour Research Group found that girls are three times more likely to self-harm than boys.9 1 in 10 teens have taken OxyContin for recreational purposes.10

Around the world, gender-based violence against woman between the ages of 15 and 44 “accounts for more death and ill-health than cancer, traffic injuries, and malaria put together.”7

7 Sisters of Saint Joseph. “JUST Notes SPECIAL ISSUE ON Violence Against Women.” November 2008. http://www.sistersofstjosephorange.org/images/resources/Violence%20 Against%20Women.pdf 8 Hughes, Sarah. “Supergirl Meltdown: How middle-class girls today are under unprecedented pressure to succeed.” Daily Mail, October 19, 2009. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/ femail/article-1221344/Supergirl-meltdown-How-middle-class-girls-today-unprecedented-pressure-succeed.html 9 Hughes, Sarah. “Supergirl Meltdown: How middle-class girls today are under unprecedented pressure to succeed.” Daily Mail, October 19, 2009. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/ femail/article-1221344/Supergirl-meltdown-How-middle-class-girls-today-unprecedented-pressure-succeed.html 10 The Partnership for a Drug-Free America. “Getting High on Prescription and Overthe-Counter Drugs Is Dangerous A guide to keeping your teenager safe in a changing world.” http://download.ncadi.samhsa.gov/ken/pdf/PHD1113/PHD1113.pdf 3

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Threats to Girlhood

Threats to Girlhood

Almost half of all parents believe that baby videos positively impact early child/infant development. 11 Television exposure has actually been shown to impede infant and early childhood development, delay language acquisition, impair attention control, dull cognitive development, and rouse aggressive behavior.12 TV programming actually distracts babies, thereby limiting their social and active engagement in play activities that are fundamental for neurological and cognitive development.13

Media, Television, & Hyper-Sexualization

Parents are less engaged and less responsive to their babies when the television is on.14

TV viewing among kids is at an eight-year high.21 3, 4, and 5 year olds lose 45 minutes of creative play for every hour of television they consume.15 11 The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. “The Media Family: Electronic Media in the Lives of Infants, Toddlers, Preschoolers, and Their Parents.” Wednesday, May 24, 2006, Washington, D.C. http://www.kff.org/entmedia/entmedia052406pkg.cfm 12 Christakis, Dimitri A, Jill Gilkerson, Jeffrey A Richards, Frederick J Zimmerman, et al. “Audible Television and Decreased Adult Words, Infant Vocalizations, and Conversational Turns: A Population-Based Study” Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine. Chicago: Jun 2009. Vol. 163, Iss. 6; p. 554. 13 Christakis, Dimitri A, Jill Gilkerson, Jeffrey A Richards, Frederick J Zimmerman, et al. “Audible Television and Decreased Adult Words, Infant Vocalizations, and Conversational Turns: A Population-Based Study” Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine. Chicago: Jun 2009. Vol. 163, Iss. 6; p. 554. 14 Wilson , B. J.; Smith, S.L.; Potter, W.J.; Kunkel, D.; Linz, D.; Colvin, C.M.; & Donnerstein, E. (2002) “Violence in Children’s Television Programming: Assessing the Risks.” Journal of Communication, 52. p.5-35. 15 Vandewater, Elizabeth A.’ Bickham, David S.; and June H. Lee. “Time Well Spent? Relating Television Use to Children’s Free-Time Activities.” Pediatrics 117, no 2 (2006). p.181-91.

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Threats to Girlhood

Threats to Girlhood

Babies and toddlers lose an average of 52 minutes of creative play for every hour of television they consume.16

sion programming, researchers at Ithaca College found that relationally aggressive characters were only punished in 50 of the 2,628 instances.20V viewing among kids is at an eight-year high.

Creative play helps nurture and develop skills that are necessary for academic, professional, and social success throughout a child’s life. Creative play helps foster proactive problem-solving skills, critical and independent thinking, empathy and the ability to relate to others, the ability to work well with others, and the ability to reflect on and learn from life experiences.17

1/3 of US households with toddlers under 3 leave the TV on most or all the time.22

Studies reveal that the more television a child watches between birth and three years of age, the more likely they are to bully others in grade school and score lower than average on IQ and academic tests.18 Preschoolers have not yet developed the cognitive abilities necessary to connect the lesson at the end of a 30-minute television program to the conflict developed during the program, instead preschoolers learn from every social interaction depicted on television. As a result, educational television programs that construct social/ relational conflict in order to teach a lesson at the end of the program actually cause preschool girls to become more relationally aggressive.19 96% of all children’s television programming contains verbal insults and put-downs. After viewing 2,628 relationally aggressive exchanges during children’s televi16 Vandewater, Elizabeth A.’ Bickham, David S.; and June H. Lee. “Time Well Spent? Relating Television Use to Children’s Free-Time Activities.” Pediatrics 117, no 2 (2006). p.181-91. 17 Susan Linn. “The Case for Make Believe: Saving Play in a Commercialized World.” New York: The New P., 2008. p.11-23. 18 Linn, Susan. “The Case for Make Believe: Saving Play in a Commercialized World.” New York: The New P., 2008. p. 49. 19 Ostrov, J. M., Gentile, D. A., & Crick, N. R. (2006). Media Exposure, Aggression and Prosocial Behavior During Early Childhood: A Longitudinal Study.  Social Development, 15, p. 612-627. 7

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40% of 3-month-olds in the US watch TV regularly.23 19% of American infants under 12 months have a television in their bedroom.24 2 to 5 year olds in the US spend an average of 32 hours a week watching television.25 The average American child “has ‘spent the equivalent of three years in the tutelage of the family television set’ by the time they reach first grade.”26 While the average Australian child watches 17.5 hours of television each week, 20% of Australian children actually watch more than 30 hours a week.27 20 Bronson, Po; and Ashley Merrymen. “NurtureShock.” New York: Twelve, 2009. p.182. 21 McDonough, Patricia. “TV Viewing Among Kids at an Eight-Year High.” Nielson Wire, October 26, 2009. http://blog.nielsen.com/nielsenwire/media_entertainment/tvviewing-among-kids-at-an-eight-year-high/ 22 The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. “The Media Family: Electronic Media in the Lives of Infants, Toddlers, Preschoolers, and Their Parents.” Wednesday, May 24, 2006, Washington, D.C. http://www.kff.org/entmedia/entmedia052406pkg.cfm 23 Barrett, Jennifer. “Study: 40 percent of 3-month-olds watch TV regularly.” The Salt Lake Tribune. Salt Lake City, Utah: May 7, 2007. http://article.wn.com/view/2007/05/08/ Study_40_percent_of_3montholds_watch_TV_regularly/ 24 The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation “The Media Family: Electronic Media in the Lives of Infants, Toddlers, Preschoolers, and Their Parents.” Wednesday, May 24, 2006, Washington, D.C. http://www.kff.org/entmedia/entmedia052406pkg.cfm 25 McDonough, Patricia. “TV Viewing Among Kids at an Eight-Year High.” Nielson Wire, October 26, 2009. http://blog.nielsen.com/nielsenwire/media_entertainment/tvviewing-among-kids-at-an-eight-year-high/ 26 Sharon Beder, Wendy Varney, and Richard Gosden. “This Little Kiddy Went to Market: the Corporate Capture of Childhood.” New York: Pluto P., 2009. p. 8. 27 Sharon Beder, Wendy Varney, and Richard Gosden. “This Little Kiddy Went to Market: the Corporate Capture of Childhood.” New York: Pluto P., 2009. p. 8. 8


Threats to Girlhood

Threats to Girlhood

The average child in the UK watches 17 hours of TV a week.28

Girls are frequently portrayed as the victim of violent acts on TV.33

The Yale Rudd Center has discovered that the least healthy breakfast cereals are the ones that are most frequently and most aggressively marketed to children, through all forms of media.29

Violent television desensitizes viewers to real-life violence.34

8 in 10 foods advertised to children on Nickelodeon are for low nutrition foods.30 The Rudd Center’s 2009 study found that “Cereals marketed directly to children have 85% more sugar, 65% less fiber, and 60% more sodium than cereals marketed to adults for adult consumption.”32 The Center for Science in the Public Interest has recently reported that 74% of the food products that General Mills advertises to children are of poor nutritional quality.31 -The Rudd Center’s 2009 study found that “Cereals marketed directly to children have 85% more sugar, 65% less fiber, and 60% more sodium than cereals marketed to adults for adult consumption.”32

28 Sharon Beder, Wendy Varney, and Richard Gosden. “This Little Kiddy Went to Market: the Corporate Capture of Childhood.” New York: Pluto P., 2009. p. 8. 29 Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity, et al. “Cereal FACTS: Evaluating the Nutrition Quality and Marketing of Children’s Cereals.” October, 2009. p.11. http://www. cerealfacts.org/media/Cereal_FACTS_Report.pdf 30 The Center for Science in the Public Interest. “Pledge Report: Better for Who? Revisiting Company Promises on Food Marketing to Children.” November 2009. http:// cspinet.org/new/pdf/pledgereport.pdf 31 The Center for Science in the Public Interest. “Pledge Report: Better for Who? Revisiting Company Promises on Food Marketing to Children.” November 2009. http:// cspinet.org/new/pdf/pledgereport.pdf 32 Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity, et al. “Cereal FACTS: Evaluating the Nutrition Quality and Marketing of Children’s Cereals.” October, 2009. p.11. http://www. cerealfacts.org/media/Cereal_FACTS_Report.pdf 9

The average child will witness 200,000 acts of violence and 40,000 murders on television by the time they are 18.35 Women and girls are grossly under-represented in Grated films. Of the 4,000+ characters featured in the topgrossing G-rated films between 1990 and 2004, 75% of all characters were male, 83% of the characters shown in crowds were male, 83% of all narrators were male, and 72% of all speaking characters were male.36 According to the American Psychological Association, the “gross under-representation of women or girls in films with family-friendly content reflects a missed opportunity to present a broad spectrum of girls and women in roles that are non-sexualized.”37

33 Canadian Teacher’s Federation. “Kids’ Take on Media: What 5,700 Canadian kids say about movies, TV, video and computer games and more…” November, 2003. http:// www.ctf-fce.ca/documents/Resources/en/MERP/bulletinforparents.pdf 34 Canadian Teacher’s Federation. “Kids’ Take on Media: What 5,700 Canadian kids say about movies, TV, video and computer games and more…” November, 2003. http:// www.ctf-fce.ca/documents/Resources/en/MERP/bulletinforparents.pdf 35 Parents Television Council. “TV Bloodbath: Violence on Prime Time Broadcast TV: A PTC State of the Television Industry Report.” http://www.parentstv.org/PTC/publications/reports/stateindustryviolence/main.asp 36 J. Kelly, and S.L. Smith. “Where the Girls Aren’t: Gender Disparity Saturates G-rated Films.” 2006. In: American Psychological Association, Task Force on the Sexualization of Girls. “Report of the APA Task Force on the Sexualization of Girls.” Washington, DC: American Psychological Association, 2007. p.12. http://www.apa.org/pi/wpo/sexualization.html 37 American Psychological Association, Task Force on the Sexualization of Girls. “Report of the APA Task Force on the Sexualization of Girls.” Washington, DC: American Psychological Association, 2007. p.12. http://www.apa.org/pi/wpo/sexualization.html 10


Threats to Girlhood

The American Psychological Association reports that media images that sexualize young women and girls compromise girls’ comfort and confidence with their own bodies. This causes emotional strain and problems with self-image and has been linked to eating disorders, low self-esteem, and depression. 38 A 2002 content analysis of popular music videos on BET found that 84% of videos contained sexual imagery.39 71% of women in the most popular music videos aired on BET in 2002 were nude or dressed in provocative clothing. 40

Threats to Girlhood

75% of the beer ads and 50% of the non-beer advertisements featured during prime-time sports and entertainment programming depict women in very limited and objectifying roles.44 Impossible standards of beauty are presented by the media as the norm.45

40% of advertisements in Time and Vogue featured women as decorative objects.43

Hyper-sexualization of young women is linked to eating disorders and depression.41 20.8% of women in prime-time television commercials are shown in a state of undress, exhibited more “sexiness,” and are depicted as sexual objects vs 9.2% of men.42 -40% of advertisements in Time and Vogue featured women as decorative objects.43

38 Report of the APA Task Force on the Sexualization of Girls, http://www.apa.org/pi/ women/programs/girls/report-full.pdf 39 Ward, L.M., & Rivadeneyra, R. (2002, August). Dancing, strutting, and bouncing in cars:The women of music videos. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Psychological Association, Chicago. In: American Psychological Association, Task Force on the Sexualization of Girls. “Report of the APA Task Force on the Sexualization of Girls.” Washington, DC: American Psychological Association, 2007. http://www.apa.org/ pi/wpo/sexualization.html 40 Ward, L.M., & Rivadeneyra, R. (2002, August). Dancing, strutting, and bouncing in cars:The women of music videos. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Psychological Association, Chicago. In: American Psychological Association, Task Force on the Sexualization of Girls. “Report of the APA Task Force on the Sexualization of Girls.” Washington, DC: American Psychological Association, 2007. http://www.apa.org/ pi/wpo/sexualization.html 41 Zurbriggen, Eileen L.; Collins, Rebecca L.; Lamb, Sharon; Roberts, Tomi-Ann; Tolman, Deborah L.; Ward, L. Monique; Blake, Jeanne. Report of the Task Force on the Sexualization of Girls. Journal of American Psychological Association. 2007. 42 American Psychological Association, Task Force on the Sexualization of Girls. (2007). “Report of the APA Task Force on the Sexualization of Girls.” Washington, DC: American Psychological Association. www.apa.org/pi/wpo/sexualization.html 43 American Psychological Association,Task Force on the Sexualization of Girls. (2007). “Report of the APA Task Force on the Sexualization of Girls.” Washington, DC: American Psychological Association. www.apa.org/pi/wpo/sexualization.html

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Research indicates that exposure to images of thin, young, air-brushed female bodies is correlated to depression, loss of self-esteem, and the development of unhealthy eating habits in women and girls. 46 In a 2007 survey, conducted in the UK, girls reported that the images of ‘perfect’ celebrities cause them to feel dissatisfied with their own bodies. 70% of teen girls surveyed dislike their faces, only 8% of teen girls reported being happy with their bodies, and two-thirds of the girls reported that “their lives would improve dramatically if they lost weight.”47 44 American Psychological Association,Task Force on the Sexualization of Girls. (2007). Report of the APA Task Force on the Sexualization of Girls.Washington, DC: American Psychological Association. www.apa.org/pi/wpo/sexualization.html. 45 Gerber, Robin. “Notes for Speech in London on Gender Stereotyping.” EuroFIA. London 14th-15th of November 2009. www.fia-actors.com/uploads/Treasa_ NiMHURCHU.doc 46 Gerber, Robin. “Notes for Speech in London on Gender Stereotyping.” EuroFIA. London 14th-15th of November 2009. www.fia-actors.com/uploads/Treasa_ NiMHURCHU.doc 47 Hughes, Sarah. “Supergirl Meltdown: How middle-class girls today are under unprecedented pressure to succeed.” Daily Mail, October 19, 2009. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/ femail/article-1221344/Supergirl-meltdown-How-middle-class-girls-today-unprecedented-pressure-succeed.html 12


Threats to Girlhood

Threats to Girlhood

The average U.S. woman is 5’4” and weighs 140 pounds. The models that frequently “represent” the average woman are typically around 5’11” and weigh around 117 pounds.48 Before Western television became available in Fiji, the rate of purging was 0%. Three years after Western television became available in Fiji, the rate of purging among Fijian girls had gone up to 11%.49 Three years after the introduction of Western television in Fiji, 74% of Fijian girls reported that they felt dissatisfied with their bodies at least some of the time.50 Over three-quarters of the female characters in TV situation comedies are underweight, only one in twenty is above average in size.51 Researchers report that women’s magazines have 10½ times more ads and articles promoting weight loss than men’s magazines.52 75% of women’s magazines write and feature articles that provide body altering tips, hints and testimonials through diet, exercise, or cosmetic surgery.53 48 Gerber, Robin. “Notes for Speech in London on Gender Stereotyping.” EuroFIA. London 14th-15th of November 2009. www.fia-actors.com/uploads/Treasa_NiMHURCHU. doc 49 Becker, Annie E.; Burwell, Rebecca A.; and David B. Herzog, et. al. “Eating behaviours and attitudes following prolonged exposure to television among ethnic Fijian adolescent girls.” The British Journal of Psychiatry (2002) 180: p.509-514. http://bjp. rcpsych.org/cgi/content/full/180/6/509. In: End Fat Talk. “Stats.” http://www.endfattalk. org/stats.html 50 Becker, Annie E.; Burwell, Rebecca A.; and David B. Herzog, et. al. “Eating behaviours and attitudes following prolonged exposure to television among ethnic Fijian adolescent girls.” The British Journal of Psychiatry (2002) 180: 509-514. http://bjp.rcpsych. org/cgi/content/full/180/6/509. In: End Fat Talk. “Stats.” http://www.endfattalk.org/stats. html 51 Baghdadi, Hiba. “Media influence our perception of ‘beauty’.” Eastern Echo, January 6, 2010. http://easternecho.com/index.php/search/?a=1&au=Hiba+Baghdadi 52 Gerber, Robin. “Notes for Speech in London on Gender Stereotyping.” EuroFIA. London 14th-15th of November 2009. www.fia-actors.com/uploads/Treasa_ NiMHURCHU.doc 53 Gerber, Robin. “Notes for Speech in London on Gender Stereotyping.” EuroFIA. London 14th-15th of November 2009. www.fia-actors.com/uploads/Treasa_ NiMHURCHU.doc 13

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Threats to Girlhood

Threats to Girlhood

Self-esteem has more influence on the way girls perceive their bodies than do their actual body shape and weigh.54 Low self-esteem significantly increases the likelihood that girls will engage in negative and self-destructive behaviors such as “disordered eating, cutting, bullying, smoking, or drinking when feeling badly about themselves.”55

Self-Esteem,Wellness, Weight, & Body Image

75% of girls who struggle with low self-esteem admit to engaging in self-destructive behavior when they feel bad about themselves, compared to only 25% of girls who have high self-esteem.56 25% of teenage girls who struggle with low self-esteem engage in self-harm when feeling bad about themselves, while only 4% of girls with high self-esteem engage in self-harm when feeling bad about themselves.57 25% of teenage girls who struggle with low self-esteem have developed disordered eating habits (including “refusing to eat, over-eating, and throwing up”), while only 7% of girls who have high self-esteem have developed disordered eating habits.58 54 Dove Self-Esteem Fund. “Real Girls, Real Pressure: A National Report on the State of Self-Esteem.” Commissioned: June 2008. http://content.dove.us/makeadiff/pdf/SelfEsteem_Report.pdf 55 Dove Self-Esteem Fund. “Real Girls, Real Pressure: A National Report on the State of Self-Esteem.” Commissioned: June 2008. http://content.dove.us/makeadiff/pdf/SelfEsteem_Report.pdf 56 Dove Self-Esteem Fund. “Real Girls, Real Pressure: A National Report on the State of Self-Esteem.” Commissioned: June 2008. http://content.dove.us/makeadiff/pdf/SelfEsteem_Report.pdf 57 Dove Self-Esteem Fund. “Real Girls, Real Pressure: A National Report on the State of Self-Esteem.” Commissioned: June 2008. http://content.dove.us/makeadiff/pdf/SelfEsteem_Report.pdf 58 Dove Self-Esteem Fund. “Real Girls, Real Pressure: A National Report on the State of Self-Esteem.” Commissioned: June 2008. http://content.dove.us/makeadiff/pdf/SelfEsteem_Report.pdf

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Threats to Girlhood

Threats to Girlhood

57% of all girls have a mother who reinforces self-consciousness and body issues by criticizing her own looks.59

Increased levels of stress in adolescent girls ages 10 to 15 promotes weight gain and obesity.65

71% of girls who struggle with low self-esteem “feel their appearance does not measure up, including not feeling pretty enough, thin enough, or stylish or trendy enough (compared to 29% of girls with high selfesteem).”60

The number of girls diagnosed with depression, eating disorders, and body dysmorphia is on the rise.66

78% of girls who struggle with low self-esteem “admit that it is hard to feel good in school when you do not feel good about how you look (compared to 54% of girls with high self-esteem).”61 Two out of every three diagnosis is a girl.62

13% of 9-17 year olds have an anxiety disorder. Two out of every three diagnosis is a girl.62 Almost half of all girls diagnosed with generalized anxiety will continue to struggle with anxiety as adults.63 Half of 14 and 15 year old girls in the UK feel unable to cope with the pressures of modern life.64 59 Dove Self-Esteem Fund. “Real Girls, Real Pressure: A National Report on the State of Self-Esteem.” Commissioned: June 2008. http://content.dove.us/makeadiff/pdf/SelfEsteem_Report.pdf 60 Dove Self-Esteem Fund. “Real Girls, Real Pressure: A National Report on the State of Self-Esteem.” Commissioned: June 2008. http://content.dove.us/makeadiff/pdf/SelfEsteem_Report.pdf 61 Dove Self-Esteem Fund. “Real Girls, Real Pressure: A National Report on the State of Self-Esteem.” Commissioned: June 2008. http://content.dove.us/makeadiff/pdf/SelfEsteem_Report.pdf 62 SAMHSA National Mental Health Information Center. “Children’s Mental Health Facts Children and Adolescents with Mental, Emotional, and Behavioral Disorders,” http://mentalhealth.samhsa.gov/publications/allpubs/CA-0006/default.asp; AnxietyBC, “Generalized Anxiety.” http://www.anxietybc.com/parent/generalized.php 63 AnxietyBC. Generalized Anxiety. http://www.anxietybc.com/parent/generalized.php 64 Womack, Sarah. “The Best Years of Our Lives? We don’t Think So.” The Telegraph. February 24, 2005. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/1484278/The-best-years-ofour-lives-We-dont-think-so.html

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1/3 of girls in the United Kingdom aged 14 and 15 report being “unhappy”.67

More woman are currently struggling with anorexia or bulimia than breast cancer.68 Eating disorders affect 70 million individuals worldwide, a disproportionate percentage of whom are girls.68 cer.69

Eating disorders have a higher mortality rate than any other mental illness.70 65 Lohman, Brenda J.; Stewart, Susan; Gundersen, Craig; Garasky, Steven; and Joey C. Eisenmann. “Adolescent Overweight and Obesity: Links to Food Insecurity and Individual, Maternal, and Family Stressors.” Journal of Adolescent Health, September 2009, Vol. 45, Issue 3, p. 230-237. 66 Hughes, Sarah. “Supergirl Meltdown: How middle-class girls today are under unprecedented pressure to succeed.” Daily Mail, October 19, 2009. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/ femail/article-1221344/Supergirl-meltdown-How-middle-class-girls-today-unprecedented-pressure-succeed.html 67 Womack, Sarah. “The Best Years of Our Lives? We don’t Think So.” The Telegraph. February 24, 2005. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/1484278/The-best-years-ofour-lives-We-dont-think-so.html 68 The Renfrew Center Foundation for Eating Disorders. “Eating Disorders 101 Guide: A Summary of Issues, Statistics and Resources.” September 2002, revised October 2003, http://www.renfrew.org. In: http://www.eatingdisorderinfo.org/Resources/EatingDisordersStatistics/tabid/964/Default.aspx 69 National Eating Disorder Association. In: End Fat Talk. “Stats.” http://www.endfattalk.org/stats.html 70 South Carolina Department of Mental Health, “Eating Disorder Statistics.” http:// www.state.sc.us/dmh/anorexia/statistics.htm 18


Threats to Girlhood

Threats to Girlhood

In 1970, the average age at which girls started dieting was 14; by 1990 the average age fell to 8.71 mage.72

The number of girls admitted to the hospital due to anorexia in England has increased 80% over the last decade.73 In an Australian survey, girls reported that they were more concerned about their body image than suicide, depression, or drugs.74

10% of teen girls have adopted unhealthy eating habits as a result of their distorted body image.72 Only 30% to 40% of anorexics ever make a full recovery.75 5% to 10% of anorexics die within 10 years of the disease’s onset.76 18% to 20% of anorexics die within 20 years of the disease’s onset.77 71 University of Boulder at Colorado. “Shocking Statistics.” http://www.colorado.edu/ StudentGroups/wellness/NewSite/BdyImgShockingStats.html 72 Appleyard, Diana. “Rise of the child women: The new breed of girls as young as ten who dream of manicures, diets and breast implants.” Daily Mail, May 08, 2009. http:// www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-1174626/Rise-child-women-The-new-breed-girlsyoung-dream-manicures-diets-breast-implants.html 73 BBC. “GPs ‘failing on eating disorders.’” February 23, 2009. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/ hi/health/7905223.stm 74 “National Survey of Young Australians.” 2007. In: End Fat Talk. “Stats.” http://www. endfattalk.org/stats.html 75 South Carolina Department of Mental Health. “Eating Disorder Statistics.” http:// www.state.sc.us/dmh/anorexia/statistics.htm 76 South Carolina Department of Mental Health. “Eating Disorder Statistics.” http:// www.state.sc.us/dmh/anorexia/statistics.htm 77 South Carolina Department of Mental Health. “Eating Disorder Statistics.” http:// www.state.sc.us/dmh/anorexia/statistics.htm 19

Using “dangerous weight control behaviors,” such as vomiting, increases the likelihood that a girl who is dissatisfied with her weight or appearance will attempt suicide. 78 42% of 1st-3rd grade girls want to be thinner.79 Young girls are more afraid of becoming fat than they are of nuclear war, cancer, or losing their parents.80 Half of all women would rather be hit by a truck than be fat.81 51% of 9 to 10 year old girls “feel better about themselves on a diet.”82 81% of 10 year olds are afraid of being fat.83 26% of 10 year old girls report not being thin enough.84 26% of 10 year old girls are fixated on their weight.85 78 Crow Scott; Eisenberg Marla E; Story Mary; Neumark-Sztainer Dianne. “Are body dissatisfaction, eating disturbance, and body mass index predictors of suicidal behavior in adolescents? longitudinal study.” Journal of consulting and clinical psychology 2008;76(5). p.887-92. In: End fat Talk. “Stats.” http://www.endfattalk.org/stats.html 79 Dove Self-Esteem Fund. “Real Girls, Real Pressure: A National Report on the State of Self-Esteem.” Commissioned: June 2008. http://content.dove.us/makeadiff/pdf/SelfEsteem_Report.pdf 80 University of Boulder at Colorado. “Shocking Statistics.” http://www.colorado.edu/ StudentGroups/wellness/NewSite/BdyImgShockingStats.html 81 Courtney Martin “Perfect girls, Starving Daughters: The Frightening New Normalcy of Hating Your Body.” New York: The Free Press, 2007. In: End Fat Talk. “Stats.” http:// www.endfattalk.org/stats.html 82 Dove Self-Esteem Fund. “Real Girls, Real Pressure: A National Report on the State of Self-Esteem.” Commissioned: June 2008. http://content.dove.us/makeadiff/pdf/SelfEsteem_Report.pdf 83 Dove Self-Esteem Fund. “Real Girls, Real Pressure: A National Report on the State of Self-Esteem.” Commissioned: June 2008. http://content.dove.us/makeadiff/pdf/SelfEsteem_Report.pdf 84 Dove Self-Esteem Fund. “Real Girls, Real Pressure: A National Report on the State of Self-Esteem.” Commissioned: June 2008. http://content.dove.us/makeadiff/pdf/SelfEsteem_Report.pdf 85 Appleyard, Diana. “Rise of the child women: The new breed of girls as young as ten who dream of manicures, diets and breast implants.” Daily Mail, May 08, 2009. http:// www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-1174626/Rise-child-women-The-new-breed-girlsyoung-dream-manicures-diets-breast-implants.html 20


Threats to Girlhood

Threats to Girlhood

50% of 11 to 13 year old girls identify themselves as overweight.86 95% of eating disorders are diagnosed in girls between the ages of 12 and 25.87 80% of 13 year old girls have made attempts to lose weight.88 pressure to look good.”89

94% of girls aged 14 and 15 report being burdened by “too much pressure to look good”.89 Obesity is the number one health challenge plaguing US children.90 26% of Canadian children, a total of 1.6 million children, are overweight or obese91 22% of children in Spain are over weight or obese.92 1 in every 3 children in the UK is overweight by their final year in primary school (elementary school).93 86 South Carolina Department of Mental Health, “Eating Disorder Statistics.” http:// www.state.sc.us/dmh/anorexia/statistics.htm 87 South Carolina Department of Mental Health, “Eating Disorder Statistics.” http:// www.state.sc.us/dmh/anorexia/statistics.htm 88 South Carolina Department of Mental Health, “Eating Disorder Statistics.” http:// www.state.sc.us/dmh/anorexia/statistics.htm 89 Womack, Sarah. “The Best Years of Our Lives? We don’t Think So.” The Telegraph. February 24, 2005. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/1484278/The-best-years-ofour-lives-We-dont-think-so.html 90 Dunlevy, Robert. “Healthy children must be our goal”. The Charleston Gazette. Charleston, W.V.: Jun 15, 2009. pg. A.4. 91 Childhood Obesity Foundation. “Welcome.” http://www.childhoodobesityfoundation. ca/ 92 Epode European Network. “THAO in Spain.” http://www.epode-european-network. com/en/epode-in-europe-detail/103.html 93 NHS. “Nearly one in three Year 6 pupils are overweight or obese, says new report.” The Information Centre for Health and Social Care, December 10 2009. http://www. 21

4 year old girls in Sweden are six times more likely then they were 20 years ago to have a Body Mass Index (BMI) of more than 30.94 10 year old girls in Sweden are five times more likely then they were 20 years ago to have a Body Mass Index (BMI) of more than 30.95 30% to 40% of children born after 2000 in the United States are at risk of developing diabetes during the course of their lifetimes.96 ncer.97

Overweight girls are more likely to become obese women, a statistically relevant predictor of breast cancer.98

Childhood obesity can cause early onset of pubertal development, a risk factor for adult breast cancer.97 Obese girls have an increased risk of developing asthma.99 ic.nhs.uk/news-and-events/press-office/press-releases/nearly-one-in-three-year-6-pupilsare-overweight-or-obese-says-new-report 94 Holmbäck, Ulf; Fridman, Jennifer; Gustafsson, Jan; Proos, Lemm; Sundelin, Claes; and Anders Forslund. “Childhood obesity on the up in Sweden especially in girls.” April 17, 2007. http://www.foodnavigator.com/Science-Nutrition/Childhood-obesity-on-the-upin-Sweden-especially-in-girls 95 Holmbäck, Ulf; Fridman, Jennifer; Gustafsson, Jan; Proos, Lemm; Sundelin, Claes; and Anders Forslund. “Childhood obesity on the up in Sweden especially in girls.” April 17, 2007. http://www.foodnavigator.com/Science-Nutrition/Childhood-obesity-on-the-upin-Sweden-especially-in-girls 96 Dunlevy, Robert. “Healthy children must be our goal.” The Charleston Gazette. Charleston, W.V.: Jun 15, 2009. pg. A.4. 97 Yen, Irene. “Neighborhoods and Obesity in Pre-adolescent Girls: Part II.” http://www. cbcrp.org/RESEARCH/PageGrant.asp?grant_id=5304 98 Yen, Irene. “Neighborhoods and Obesity in Pre-adolescent Girls: Part II.” http://www. cbcrp.org/RESEARCH/PageGrant.asp? grant_id=5304 99 Hitti, Miranda. “Obesity Raises Girls’ Risk of Asthma; Excess Weight Causes 1 in 4 Asthma Cases in Girls and Young Women.” WebMD Health News. Mar. 1, 2005. http:// 22


Threats to Girlhood

Obese adolescents have the same risk of premature death in adulthood as people who smoke more than 10 cigarettes a day.100

Threats to Girlhood

High childhood blood pressure is linked to higher blood pressure during adulthood, which increases the likelihood of strokes and heart disease later in life.106

The Girl Scout Research Institute has found that many girls currently define healthy eating habits in terms of avoiding unhealthy food instead of adding healthful foods to their diet.101 The Girl Scout research Institute has also found that many girls “do not regard skipping or eating unbalanced meals (e.g., a piece of fruit or snack in lieu of a full meal) as unhealthy behavior.”102 The Rudd Center’s 2009 cereal study found that cereals marketed to children have “60% more sodium than cereals marketed to adults.”103 When children’s diets are high in salt, it can deplete their bones of calcium. Teenage girls whose diets are high in salt are particularly susceptible to calcium depletion, which puts them at higher risk of developing osteoporosis later in life.104 High salt intake can cause high blood pressure in children.105 www.health.am/weightloss/more/obesity_raises_girls_risk_of_asthma/ 100 Neovius, Martin; Sundström, Johan; and Finn Rasmussen. “Combined effects of overweight and smoking in late adolescence on subsequent mortality: nationwide cohort study.” British Medical Journal, February 24, 2009. 101 The Girl Scout Research Institute. “The New Normal? What Girls Say About Healthy Living” (2006). p. 20 http://www.girlscouts.org/research/publications/original/gs_exec_ summary.pdf 102 The Girl Scout Research Institute. “The New Normal? What Girls Say About Healthy Living” (2006). p. 20-1 http://www.girlscouts.org/research/publications/original/gs_exec_summary.pdf 103 Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity, et al. “Cereal FACTS: Evaluating the Nutrition Quality and Marketing of Children’s Cereals.” October, 2009. p. 11. http://www. cerealfacts.org/media/Cereal_FACTS_Report.pdf 104 Consensus Action on Salt and Health. Salt and Children. October 12, 2009. P.2. http://www.actiononsalt.org.uk/professionals/resources/children_and%20_salt_final.pdf 105 Consensus Action on Salt and Health. Salt and Children. October 12, 2009. P.2. 23

http://www.actiononsalt.org.uk/professionals/resources/children_and%20_salt_final.pdf 106 Consensus Action on Salt and Health. Salt and Children. October 12, 2009. P.2. http://www.actiononsalt.org.uk/professionals/resources/children_and%20_salt_final.pdf 24


Threats to Girlhood

Threats to Girlhood

Achieving the mainstream media’s glorified image of “hotness” demands that girls be consumers.107 Because of the pressure they feel to have the newest “in vogue” products, girls more so than boys report feelings of “inadequacy and discomfort as a result of ‘images of perfection’ promoted by advertising.”108 43% of 6 to 9 year olds use lipstick or lip gloss; 38% use hairstyling products; and 12% use other -cosmetics.109 The average 12 to 19 year old girl uses fragrances five times a week.110

“Diva-ization” & Consumerization

Collectively 8 to 12 year olds spend more than $40 million a month on beauty products. Teens spend another $100 million.111 Cosmetic surgery procedures performed on those 18 and younger have nearly doubled over the past decade.112 Over 77,000 invasive surgical procedures were performed on teens 18 years old and younger in 2005, a 15% increase in 5 years.113

107 Ganeva, Tana. “Sexpot Virgins: The Media’s Sexualization of Young Girls.” May 24, 2008. http://www.alternet.org/story/85977/ 108 National Consumer Council. “Shopping Generation.” July 2005. P. 5. http://www. aeforum.org/aeforum.nsf/d5335c270a1f94d380256ef3004240f2/454e900c39c957418025 703b004108ed/$FILE/shopping_generation.pdf 109 Bennett, Jessica. “Generation Diva: How our obsession with beauty is changing our kids.” Newsweek. March 30, 2009. 110 American Psychological Association,Task Force on the Sexualization of Girls. (2007). “Report of the APA Task Force on the Sexualization of Girls.” Washington, DC: American Psychological Association. www.apa.org/pi/wpo/sexualization.html. 111 Bennett, Jessica. Generation Diva: How our obsession with beauty is changing our kids. Newsweek. March 30, 2009. 112 Bennett, Jessica. Generation Diva: How our obsession with beauty is changing our kids. Newsweek. March 30, 2009. 113 American Psychological Association,Task Force on the Sexualization of Girls. (2007). “Report of the APA Task Force on the Sexualization of Girls.” Washington, DC: American Psychological Association. www.apa.org/pi/wpo/sexualization.html. 25

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Threats to Girlhood

Estimates indicate that cosmetic maintenance, from hair and nails to face creams and mascara, costs the average image-conscious ‘diva’ more than $449,000 over the course of her lifetime.114 Nearly half of all children in the United Kingdom use brand name as part of their purchase criteria when shopping. 115 Currently, children as young as seven months old are exhibiting brand preferences and request brands based on the characters on the package or product.116 2 to 3 year old children develop particularly strong attachments to characters and often begin requesting specific brands and products bearing these characters before they are even able to ask for them by name.117 The consumer culture being driven and reinforced by advertising is persuading children to feel “that they will not be happy unless they have the toys and clothes that other children think are cool.”118 The images of spoiled teens depicted on television, from “My Super Sweet 16” to “Teen Cribs,” radically “raise the bar for what’s considered over the top.”119 Childrens spas, which would once have been considered over the top, are becoming increasing popular across the US.120 114 “The Beauty Breakdown: What a Lifetime of Cosmetic Maintenance will Cost a Modern Diva.” Newsweek. http://www.newsweek.com/id/187758 115 National Consumer Council. “Shopping Generation.” July 2005. http://www.aeforum.org/aeforum.nsf/d5335c270a1f94d380256ef3004240f2/454e900c39c957418025703b 004108ed/$FILE/shopping_generation.pdf 116 Beder, Sharon; Varney, Wendy; and Richard Gosden. “This Little Kiddy Went to Market: The Corporate Capture of Childhood.” New York: Pluto P., 2009. P. 29. 117 Beder, Sharon; Varney, Wendy; and Richard Gosden. “This Little Kiddy Went to Market: The Corporate Capture of Childhood.” New York: Pluto P., 2009. P.29. 118 Beder, Sharon; Varney, Wendy; and Richard Gosden. “This Little Kiddy Went to Market: The Corporate Capture of Childhood.” New York: Pluto P., 2009. P. 36. 119 Bennett, Jessica. “Generation Diva: How our obsession with beauty is changing our kids.” Newsweek. March 30, 2009. http://www.newsweek.com/id/191247 120 Bennett, Jessica. “Generation Diva: How our obsession with beauty is changing our kids.” Newsweek. March 30, 2009. http://www.newsweek.com/id/191247; Diane E. Levine, and Jean Kilbourne. “So Sexy So Soon: The New Sexualized Childhood and

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Threats to Girlhood

If members of peer groups or cliques are having sex with their boyfriends, girls feel pressure to conform and engage in sex with their boyfriends as well. Saying no to sex can jeopardize a girl’s relationship with her entire circle of friends in addition to her relationship with her boyfriend.121 2000.122

Conformism

A Girls Inc. study revealed that girls feel an intense pressure to fulfill the role of a “good girl” which demands that girls must be followers instead of leaders, skinny, wealthy, popular, always be busy, not have an opinion or not share their opinion, have a façade that never cracks, always follow the rules, and be a people pleaser.123 The pressure to conform to this good girl role, the pressure to be perfect, please everyone, do everything right, and never make waves, “leaves many girls uncomfortable with feedback and failure” which makes it more difficult for girls to work through difficulties and overcome challenges.124 The pressure to conform to this good girl role causes many girls to “hide their true feelings, go behind each other’s back, and explode in uncontrolled anger.”125 What Parents Can Do to Protect Their Kids.” New York: Ballentine Books, 2008. P. 43; Maria Puente. “From the Sandbox to the Spa.” USA Today. August 1, 2006. 121 Kuttler, Ami Flam; and Annette M. La Greca University of Miami, P.O. Box 249229, Coral Gables, FL 33124, USA 122 Simmons, Rachel. “The Curse of the Good Girl: Raising Authentic Girls with Courage and Confidence.” New York: Penguin P., 2009. p.3. 123 Simmons, Rachel. “The Curse of the Good Girl: Raising Authentic Girls with Courage and Confidence.” New York: Penguin P., 2009. p. 2-6. 124 Simmons, Rachel. “The Curse of the Good Girl: Raising Authentic Girls with Courage and Confidence.” New York: Penguin P., 2009. p. 2-6. 125 Simmons, Rachel. “The Curse of the Good Girl: Raising Authentic Girls with Courage and Confidence.” New York: Penguin P., 2009. p. 7.

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Threats to Girlhood

The pressure to conform to a peer culture predicated on the good girl ideal reinforces self-deprecation and selfconsciousness. Peer reinforced social “anxieties pressure girls to turn passionate, distinctive opinions” into questions or to detract from these statements with articulations and body language that minimize the appearance of their confidence and authority. 126 Girls who believed they should be “seen and not heard” are less likely to use contraception, to feel confident about speaking their mind, or to feel comfortable being successful if it might make others feel inferior.127

74% of girls report feeling pressured to please everyone- a nine-point increase since 2000.122

126 Simmons, Rachel. “The Curse of the Good Girl: Raising Authentic Girls with Courage and Confidence.” New York: Penguin P., 2009. p. 98-100. 127 Impett, Emily A; Schooler, Deborah; and Deborah L. Tolman.”To Be Seen and Not Heard: Femininity Ideology and Adolescent Girls’ Sexual Health.” Archives of Sexual Behavior. 2006. 31

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Threats to Girlhood

The Girl Scout Research Institute has uncovered that, while 82% of young people surveyed agreed that men and women are equally capable handling and executing leadership roles and duties, 56% agree that it is significantly more difficult for a woman to become a leader than a man, and 52% agree that women have to work harder than men to achieve leadership positions.128 s. 129

Women In Leadership

The single greatest factor which deters girls from leadership appears to be a lack of confidence in their concrete skills and abilities.129 The Girl Scout Research Institute has found that the specific skills and experiences which most frequently impact girls’ desire for and comfortability with leadership are “organizational skills, extraversion, involvement in organized and informal group activities, and experience with leadership roles.”130 92% of girls believe that everyone is capable of acquiring the qualities and skills necessary for leadership, but only 21% of girls believe that they possess these skills and qualities.131 45% of girls avoid leadership positions because they dislike speaking in front of others.132 128 Girl Scout Research Institute. “Change It Up: What Girls Say About Redefining Leadership.” 2008, p. 20. 129 Girl Scout Research Institute. “Change It Up: What Girls Say About Redefining Leadership.” 2008, p. 17. 130 Girl Scout Research Institute. “Change It Up: What Girls Say About Redefining Leadership.” 2008, p.18 131 Girl Scout Research Institute. “Change It Up: What Girls Say About Redefining Leadership.” 2008, p.14-5 132 Girl Scout Research Institute. “Change It Up: What Girls Say About Redefining Leadership.” 2008, p. 19

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Threats to Girlhood

32% of girls avoid leadership positions because they’re afraid of failure.133 30% of girls avoid leadership positions because they’re afraid of people being angry with them.134 27% of girls avoid leadership positions because they’re afraid people might not like them as a result of their leadership.135 25% of girls have trouble asserting themselves in conflict situations specifically because girls tend to define leadership in terms of friendship.136 .137

Girls aged 8 to 17 fear being judged harshly in leadership positions. They sense that peers would perceive them as “bossy”.137 Because boasting or acknowledging strengths, achievements, or accomplishments and adopting leadership roles is perceived by many girls as ‘bitchy’ behavior, many girls have trouble knowing when to assert themselves, how to identify their strengths, and how to accurately discuss their abilities.138 133 Girl Scout Research Institute. “Change It Up: What Girls Say About Redefining Leadership.” 2008, p. 19 134 Girl Scout Research Institute. “Change It Up: What Girls Say About Redefining Leadership.” 2008, p. 19. 135 Girl Scout Research Institute. “Change It Up: What Girls Say About Redefining Leadership.” 2008, p. 19. 136 Simmons, Rachel. “The Curse of the Good Girl: Raising Authentic Girls with Courage and Confidence.” New York: Penguin P., 2009. p. 8. 137 Simmons, Rachel. “The Curse of the Good Girl: Raising Authentic Girls with Courage and Confidence.” New York: Penguin P., 2009. p.3. 138 Simmons, Rachel. “The Curse of the Good Girl: Raising Authentic Girls with Courage and Confidence.” New York: Penguin P., 2009. p. 7-10. 35

Because girls define themselves by their relationships, their leadership by their friendships, and their ability to be ‘Good’ by their peer culture’s values, girls have trouble being honest when honesty might effect the impression someone has of them or how likeable they appear.139 Being so focused on helping girls achieve tangible items that they can add to their resumes, such as a strong GPA and extracurricular activities, many parents and educators often neglect the equally important intangible items, such as learning to discuss their abilities and assert themselves in conflict situations, which will help girls succeed in their careers and assist them through real world experiences.140 In 2005, women held less than 15% of Fortune 500 boardseats.141 Out of 180 countries surveyed, only 27 have elected women presidents and only 25 have appointed women prime ministers.142 Worldwide, only 16% of national parliament members are women.143 The gender pay gap in Australia actually widened in 2009, leaving Australian women earning 17% less than their male counterparts.144 139 Simmons, Rachel. “The Curse of the Good Girl: Raising Authentic Girls with Courage and Confidence.” New York: Penguin P., 2009. p. 53. 140 Simmons, Rachel. “The Curse of the Good Girl: Raising Authentic Girls with Courage and Confidence.” New York: Penguin P., 2009. p. 10. 141 In: Women’s Sports Foundation. “Women’s Sports & Fitness Facts & Statistics.” March 26, 2009. p.19. http://www.womenssportsfoundation.org/~/media/Files/PDFs%20 and%20other%20files%20by%20Topic/Issues/General/W/WSF%20FACTS%20 March%202009.pdf 142 The White House Project. “Women Leader Facts & Quotes.” http://www.thewhitehouseproject.org/facts.php 143 The White House Project. “Women Leader Facts & Quotes.” http://www.thewhitehouseproject.org/facts.php 144 Australian Women Online. “Equal Pay Day – Gender Pay Gap Widens in 2009.” 36


Threats to Girlhood

Threats to Girlhood

In the United Kingdom, women, on average, make 20% less per hour than men.145 In the United States, women, on average make 22% less per year than men.146 In Canada, women earn 70 cents for every dollar earned by their male counterparts.147 The Girl Scout Research Institute has discovered that boys and girls both believe that women have to work harder to hold leadership positions and that our society makes it significantly more difficult for women to hold leadership positions.148 Boys and girls both believe that women are actually better at traditional female roles such as “listening to others,” “taking care of others,” and “running a household.” As a result, boys more so than girls reported that certain jobs are inappropriate for women- such as “running a state or country” or “running a company.” 149

September 1, 2009.http://www.australianwomenonline.com/equal-pay-day-gender-paygap-widens-in-2009/ 145 Equality and Human Rights Commission. “Voluntary Measures Proposed for Publishing Pay Gaps: Commission Outlines New Gender Pay Reporting Proposals.” January 19, 2009. http://www.equalityhumanrights.com/media-centre/voluntary-measures-proposed-for-publishing-pay-gaps/ 146 Institute For Women’s Policy Research. “Fact Sheet: The Gender Wage Gap: 2008.” September 2009. http://www.iwpr.org/pdf/C350.pdf 147 Canwest News Service. “Gender Pay Gap Widening, Study Asserts.” March 6, 2008 http://www.canada.com/calgaryherald/story.html?id=d3ff1593-fb00-43bd-969a40e216d4b2b4&k=34354 148 Girl Scout Research Institute. “Change It Up: What Girls Say About Redefining Leadership.” 2008. p. 20. 149 Girl Scout Research Institute. “Change It Up: What Girls Say About Redefining Leadership.” 2008. p. 20. 37

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Threats to Girlhood

Girls are more likely than boys to be physically inactive.150 Girls of ethnic minorities are the least physically active group among adolescents and, consequently, are at higher risk of becoming obese and developing chronic diseases related to inactivity.151

Athletics & Physical Activity

Lower income parents often depend on daughters, more so than sons, to help care for siblings and oversee household chores, and being needed at home means that poverty often prevents girls from participating in athletics and other extracurricular activities.152 Less than 20% of children regularly play outdoors.153 In 2007, only 61% of girls were involved in outdoor activities, compared to 77% in 2006.154 150 In: Women’s Sports Foundation. “Women’s Sports & Fitness Facts & Statistics.” March 26, 2009. p.28. http://www.womenssportsfoundation.org/~/media/Files/PDFs%20 and%20other%20files%20by%20Topic/Issues/General/W/WSF%20FACTS%20 March%202009.pdf 151 Chelsey Thul, M.A., Nicole M. LaVoi, Ph.D., Jill Haom. “Reducing Physical Inactivity and Promoting Healthy Living: From the Voices of East African Girls.” Tucker Center for Research on Girls & Women in Sport. 2009. http://www.cehd.umn.edu/tuckercenter/projects/CEHD_Research_Day%202009.pdf 152 Thomas, Katie. “Left Behind: A City Team’s Struggle Shows Disparity in Girls’ Sports.” The New York Times, June 13, 2009. http://www.nytimes.com/2009/06/14/ sports/14girls.html?_r=1&tntemail0=y&emc=tnt&pagewanted=all 153 Appleyard, Diana. “Rise of the child women: The new breed of girls as young as ten who dream of manicures, diets and breast implants.” Daily Mail, May 08, 2009. http:// www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-1174626/Rise-child-women-The-new-breed-girlsyoung-dream-manicures-diets-breast-implants.html 154 In: Women’s Sports Foundation. “Women’s Sports & Fitness Facts & Statistics.” March 26, 2009. p.29. http://www.womenssportsfoundation.org/~/media/Files/PDFs%20 and%20other%20files%20by%20Topic/Issues/General/W/WSF%20FACTS%20 March%202009.pdf

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Sports are important for more than just physical fitness, 82% of female executives played sports growing up, most of whom report that their experience in sports

In 2007, only 61% of girls were involved in outdoor activities, compared to 77% in 2006.154

contributes to their success in business.155 Increased physical activity is tied to increased self-esteem and increased satisfaction with weight, regardless of actual weight.156

Threats to Girlhood

Female student athletes in Division 1 sports graduate college at higher rates than male athletes and non-athlete females.159 Only 11.3% of the full-time college sports information directors in 2008 were females.160 In Forbes 2007 list of the “100 most powerful celebrities” the most powerful female athlete (Maria Sharapova) came in 51st place, while the most powerful male athlete (Tiger Woods) came in 2nd place.161 In the 2002 World Cup, each member of the US men’s national soccer team received $200,000 just for reaching the quarterfinals. In the 2003 Women’s World Cup, the women’s national soccer team took third place and each team member only received $25,000.162

83% of highly active girls report that being physically active helps them feel good about themselves.157 Being physically active and participating in team sports is tied to reduced sexual risk-taking behaviors among teen girls.158 155 In: Women’s Sports Foundation. “Women’s Sports & Fitness Facts & Statistics.” March 26, 2009. p.19. http://www.womenssportsfoundation.org/~/media/Files/PDFs%20 and%20other%20files%20by%20Topic/Issues/General/W/WSF%20FACTS%20 March%202009.pdf 156 The Girl Scout Research Institute. “The New Normal? What Girls Say About Healthy Living,” (2006) http://www.girlscouts.org/research/publications/original/gs_ exec_summary.pdf 157 The Girl Scout Research Institute. “The New Normal? What Girls Say About Healthy Living,” (2006) http://www.girlscouts.org/research/publications/original/gs_ exec_summary.pdf 158 Kulig, K., Brener, N. & McManus, T. Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, 2003. In: Girl Scouts, “Sports and Physical Activity,” http://www.girlscouts.org/research/facts_ findings/sports_and_physical_activity.asp 41

159 In: Women’s Sports Foundation. “Women’s Sports & Fitness Facts & Statistics.” March 26, 2009. P.2. http://www.womenssportsfoundation.org/~/media/Files/PDFs%20 and%20other%20files%20by%20Topic/Issues/General/W/WSF%20FACTS%20 March%202009.pdf 160 In: Women’s Sports Foundation. “Women’s Sports & Fitness Facts & Statistics.” March 26, 2009. P.12. http://www.womenssportsfoundation.org/~/media/Files/PDFs%20 and%20other%20files%20by%20Topic/Issues/General/W/WSF%20FACTS%20 March%202009.pdf 161 In: Women’s Sports Foundation. “Women’s Sports & Fitness Facts & Statistics.” March 26, 2009. P.16. http://www.womenssportsfoundation.org/~/media/Files/PDFs%20 and%20other%20files%20by%20Topic/Issues/General/W/WSF%20FACTS%20 March%202009.pdf 162 In: Women’s Sports Foundation. “Women’s Sports & Fitness Facts & Statistics.” March 26, 2009. P.16. http://www.womenssportsfoundation.org/~/media/Files/PDFs%20 and%20other%20files%20by%20Topic/Issues/General/W/WSF%20FACTS%20 March%202009.pdf 42


Threats to Girlhood

Threats to Girlhood

Teenagers whose parents talk to them on a regular basis about the dangers of drug use are 42% less likely to use drugs than those whose parents don’t.163 Girls’ interest in math is heavily influenced by their parents’ attitudes. Most parents believe the stereotype that boys are better at math than girls. 164 Parents buy more math and science based toys for their sons, they spend more time on math and science activities with sons, and they believe that their sons have higher math abilities than their daughters.165 Girls with strong mathematics skills likely had father who believed that girls could excel in math.166

Family

Girls with strong mathematics skills likely had a father who believed that girls could excel in math.166 Children that are cared for by a grandparent instead of a babysitter or nursery program are 34% more likely to be overweight.167 163 Teen Drug Abuse. Troubling Teen Drug Use Statistics http://www.teendrugabuse.us/ teendrugstatistics.html 164 Jacobs, Janis E., et al. “‘I can, but I don’t want to’: Impact of Parents, Interests, and Activities on Gender Differences in Math”. In: Gender Differences in Mathematics: An Integrative Psychological Approach. Ed. Ann M. Gallagher. Cambridge: Cambridge U. P., 2005. 165 Jacobs, Janis E., et al. “‘I can, but I don’t want to’: Impact of Parents, Interests, and Activities on Gender Differences in Math”. In: Gender Differences in Mathematics: An Integrative Psychological Approach. Ed. Ann M. Gallagher. Cambridge: Cambridge U. P., 2005. 166 Jacobs, Janis E., et al. “‘I can, but I don’t want to’: Impact of Parents, Interests, and Activities on Gender Differences in Math”. In: Gender Differences in Mathematics: An Integrative Psychological Approach. Ed. Ann M. Gallagher. Cambridge: Cambridge U. P., 2005. 167 Emma Wilkinson. “Grandparents who care for children ‘boost obesity risk’.” BBC News, February 15 2010. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/8513112.stm

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Children who are raised by alcoholic parents are 4 to 10 times more likely to become alcoholics.168 Children who are raised by alcoholic parents begin drinking earlier than their peers. This puts the children of alcoholics “on an alcohol consumption trajectory riddled with problems that the young drinker does not have the life experience, maturity, or skills necessary to address or avoid.” 169 85% of American parents believe that it’s important to praise their children’s intelligence. But children raised by parents who praise natural ability over problem-solving, effort, and performance are less likely to try things they might not be good at, are less able to enjoy a challenge, and are more likely to give up when something is difficult.170 Research indicates that if parents “never, or almost never, talk about race,” children either feel confused and unsure about how their parents feel about race or actually believe that their parents never talk about race because their parents are racist.171 75% of white parents “never, or almost never, talk about race.”172 The quality of girls’ relationships with their parents impacts their sexual behavior during adolescents. Having a close and strong relationship with parents makes teenage girls less likely to be sexually active.173 168 Russell, M. Prevalence of alcoholism among children of alcoholics. In: Windle, M., and Searles, J.S., eds. Children of Alcoholics: Critical Perspectives. New York: Guilford, 1990. p. 9–38. 169 Donovan, J.E. “Adolescent alcohol initiation: A Review of Psychosocial Risk Factors.” Journal of Adolescent Health 35:529.e7–18, 2004. 170 Bronson, Po and Ashley Merryman. “NutureShock.” New York: Twelve, 2009. p. 11-26. 171 Bronson, Po and Ashley Merryman. “NutureShock.” New York: Twelve, 2009. p. 47-55. 172 Bronson, Po and Ashley Merryman. “NutureShock.” New York: Twelve, 2009. p. 52. 173 Girls Inc.and Mathematica Policy Research. “Early Predictors of Girls’ Adolescent Sexual Activity: Longitudinal Findings from the Girls Shape the Future Study.” P.7. http:// www.mathematica-mpr.com/publications/pdfs/family_support/predictors_girls.pdf 45

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In the United States, a child dies from poverty-related causes every 53 minutes.174 More than half of all persons living in poverty in the United States are women and girls.175 176

Women only own approximately 1% of the world’s land.177

Poverty

70% of the 1.2 billion people living in poverty worldwide are women.176 Even after “factors such as age, work experience, education, and family structure are taken into account,” women and girls still make up the majority of persons living in poverty. 178 25.3% of black women and 17.3% of Hispanic women live in poverty in the US, compared to only 6.2% of white men.179 Even in developed countries, poverty is a women’s issue. In the US, the poverty rate for children in female headed households is 38.4%, compared 8.4% in married households.180

174 United Nations. “UN Works: What’s Going On? America In Poverty.” http://www.un.org/works/ goingon/poverty/lessonplan_poverty.html 175 Sargent Shriver Center on Poverty Law. “An Agenda for Change: An Illinois Perspective on Creating a Better Future for America’s Women and Girls.” December 2009. p.6. http://www.povertylaw.org/ advocacy/publications/agenda-for-change.pdf

176 The White House Project. “Women Leader Facts & Quotes.” http://www.thewhitehouseproject.org/facts.php

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177 The White House Project. “Women Leader Facts & Quotes.” http://www.thewhitehouseproject. org/facts.php 178 Sargent Shriver Center on Poverty Law. “An Agenda for Change: An Illinois Perspective on Creating a Better Future for America’s Women and Girls.” December 2009. P.6. http://www.povertylaw.org/ advocacy/publications/agenda-for-change.pdf 179 U.S. Census Bureau. “2008 American Community Survey 1-Year Estimates, Detailed Table.” In: Sargent Shriver Center on Poverty Law. “An Agenda for Change: An Illinois Perspective on Creating a Better Future for America’s Women and Girls.” December 2009. P.6. http://www.povertylaw.org/ advocacy/publications/agenda-for-change.pdf 180 Allen, Kim. “Teen Pregnancy Trends in Missouri.” http://missourifamilies.org/features/adoles 48


Threats to Girlhood

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17.1% of young women and girls under age 18 in the US live in poverty- almost one in every five girls.181

girls won’t have to worry about being raped while sleeping in an unsafe environment.186

One in five single parent families in Australia lives in poverty, 84% of which are headed by woman.182

The two cohorts with the highest rates of obesity are low income and minority girls.187

The number of homeless young people and young people living in “precarious housing situations” is significantly higher than the number of young people living in shelters. In Canada, there are 2.7 times more homeless children than there are children living in shelters.183

43% of US children under the age of six live in low-income households.188

Domestic sexual abuse and male violence are common threats to homeless girls. Sexually abusive family members often cause girls to choose homelessness over living with their families; once homeless, girls become vulnerable to male violence in shelters, in ‘squats,’ and while ‘couch surfing.’184 Through interviews with girls who had struggled with homelessness, the Justice for Girls organization found that homeless girls are often forced to engage in sexual activity with older men in exchange for temporarily housing.185 Through interviews with the Justice for Girls organization, homeless girls reported that having consensual sex in exchange for a safe place to sleep often means that centsarticles/adolesfeature13.htm

181 U.S. Census Bureau. “2008 American Community Survey 1-Year Estimates, Detailed Table.” In: Sargent Shriver Center on Poverty Law. “An Agenda for Change: An Illinois Perspective on Creating a Better Future for America’s Women and Girls.” December 2009. p.6. http://www.povertylaw.org/advocacy/publications/agenda-for-change.pdf 182 Australian Senate, Community Affairs References Committee. “A hand up not a hand out: Renewing the fight against poverty: Report on poverty and financial hardship.” March, 2004.p. 223-4. http://www.aph.gov.au/senate/committee/clac_ctte/completed_inquiries/2002-04/poverty/report/report.pdf 183 Justice for Girls. “More Than Bricks and Mortar: A Rights Based Strategy to Prevent Girl Homelessness in Canada.” May 2008. p.8-9. http://www.justiceforgirls.org/publications/pdfs/jfg_housing_web.pdf 184 Justice for Girls. “More Than Bricks and Mortar: A Rights Based Strategy to Prevent Girl Homelessness in Canada.” May 2008. p. 8-12. http://www.justiceforgirls.org/publications/pdfs/jfg_housing_web.pdf 185 Justice for Girls. “More Than Bricks and Mortar: A Rights Based Strategy to Prevent Girl Homelessness in Canada.” May 2008. p. 8-9. http://www.justiceforgirls.org/publications/pdfs/jfg_housing_web.pdf 49

In Australia, 700,000 children are growing up in families in which neither parent works full-time.189 Victims of domestic violence are often forced to choose between staying in violent relationships or exposing their children to a life of poverty. The threat of raising their children in poverty often forces woman to stay in violent and abusive relationships.190 Growing up in poverty impacts children’s academic performance, which limits their employment opportunities in adulthood, making it difficult for those who have grown up in poverty to escape poverty during adulthood.191 By age three, children living in poverty in the UK are already developmentally six months behind other children when it comes it school-readiness.192 186 Justice for Girls. “More Than Bricks and Mortar: A Rights Based Strategy to Prevent Girl Homelessness in Canada.” May 2008. p. 8-9. http://www.justiceforgirls.org/publications/pdfs/jfg_housing_web.pdf 187 The Girl Scout Research Institute. “The New Normal? What Girls Say About Healthy Living.” (2006) P. 7 http://www.girlscouts.org/research/publications/original/gs_exec_summary.pdf 188 National Center for Children in Poverty. “Ten Important Questions About Child Poverty and Family Economic Hardship.” http://www.nccp.org/faq.html#question5 189 Australian Democrats. “Poverty In Australia.” http://www.democrats.org.au/campaigns/poverty_in_australia/ 190 Australian Senate, Community Affairs References Committee. “A hand up not a hand out: Renewing the fight against poverty: Report on poverty and financial hardship.” March, 2004. p. 219. http://www.aph.gov.au/senate/committee/clac_ctte/completed_inquiries/2002-04/poverty/report/report.pdf 191 Australian Senate, Community Affairs References Committee. “A hand up not a hand out: Renewing the fight against poverty: Report on poverty and financial hardship.” March, 2004. p. 223-4. http://www.aph.gov.au/senate/committee/clac_ctte/completed_inquiries/2002-04/poverty/report/report.pdf 192 Julia Griggs and Robert Walker. “The cost of child poverty for individuals and society.” 2008, p. 5. http://www.jrf.org.uk/sites/files/jrf/2313.pdf 50


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Children born into poverty are more likely to have low birth weights due to maternal stress and poor diet during pregnancy, which increases a child’s health risks throughout the course of his or her life.193 Children born into poverty are less likely to be breastfed, which increases their likelihood of developing asthma, becoming obese, and experience long-term illness.194 Teen mothers are more likely to drop out of school, are less likely to have job skills and qualifications, more likely to have a low paying job or be unemployed, more likely to live in poor housing conditions, more likely to suffer from depression, and more likely to live on welfare.195 xt.196

UNICEF reports indicate that reducing teen births is key to helping break the cycle of female poverty from one generation to the next.196

193 Julia Griggs and Robert Walker. “The cost of child poverty for individuals and society.” 2008, p. 4. http://www.jrf.org.uk/sites/files/jrf/2313.pdf 194 Julia Griggs and Robert Walker. “The cost of child poverty for individuals and society.” 2008, p. 4. http://www.jrf.org.uk/sites/files/jrf/2313.pdf 195 UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre. “A League Table of Teen Births in Rich Countries.” Innocenti Report Card, Issue no. 3, July 3 2001. P.5. http://www.unicef-irc.org/ publications/pdf/repcard3e.pdf. 196 UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre. “A League Table of Teen Births in Rich Countries.” Innocenti Report Card, Issue no. 3, July 3 2001. P.4. http://www.unicef-irc.org/ publications/pdf/repcard3e.pdf

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Girls underperform in situations that they are keenly aware have the potential to shatter education-related stereotypes that limited them.197 Young women perform below their capabilities when they are taking a math test. The same young women perform as expected when the same test is introduced as “problem-solving strategies”.198

Education

By kindergarten, children have already identified and internalized the culturally sanctioned gender and ethnic stereotypes that are expected of them. Stereotypic prejudices such as “boys are better at math” have the power to supersede a girls understanding of her own capability, depressing her individual performance that she might fulfill her expected “role”. 199 vel.200

41% of third-graders read below grade level.200 1 in 4 U.S. girls do not finish high school.201 197 Frieze, Carol. “The Critical Role of Culture and Environment as Determinants of Women’s Participation in Computer Science Caroline Frieze.” May 2007. http://reportsarchive.adm.cs.cmu.edu/anon/2007/CMU-CS-07-118.pdf. 198 Damour, Lisa; and Larry Goodman. “Shielding Students from Stereotype Threat: A Guide for Teachers.” National Association for Independent Schools, Fall 2009. http:// www.nais.org/publications/ismagazinearticle.cfm?ItemNumber=152245 199 Ambady, Nalini; Shih, Margaret; Kim, Amy; and Todd L. Pittinsky “Stereotype Susceptibility in Children: Effects of Identity Activation on Quantitative Performance.” Psychological Science, Vol. 12, No. 5 (Sep. 2001), p. 385-390. http://www.wjh.harvard. edu/~na/Children.pdf 200 The McKnight Foundation. “McKnight focuses on improved literacy by third grade,” June 30, 2009. http://www.mcknight.org/newsandviews/news_detail.aspx?itemID =7405&catID=6375&typeID=2 201 National Women’s Law Center. “When Girls Don’t Graduate We All Fail: A Call to Improve Graduation Rates for Girls.” http://www.nwlc.org/pdf/DropoutReport.pdf 53

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1 in 2 Native American girls do not finish high school.202 4 in 10 black American girls do not finish high school.203 4 in 10 Hispanic American girls do not finish high school.204 Girls who drop out have higher rates of unemployment.205 Girls who drop out make significantly lower wages.206 Girls who drop out are more likely to need social service support.207 Girls who drop out have worse overall health.208

s.209

be extraordinary in every area of their lives: academic, social, extracurricular, and appearance. 212 97% of teachers and 93% of parents feel confident that D.A.R.E. and other similar anti-drug education programs are helping keep teens and tweens safe from violence and drugs.213 Multiple research studies have shown that programs like D.A.R.E. do not actually reduce the likelihood that children will use drugs or tobacco.214 Only 41 of the 718 drug prevention programs that receive federal grants have actually been shown to have any positive effect at all.215

Girls are 55% more likely than boys to pressure themselves to achieve the grades they want.210 Girls want more friendships, more transparent and real friends, less cliques, and fewer stressful relationships (mean girls).211 In general, girls report far more school-related stress than do boys. They believe that to be successful, they have to 202 National Women’s Law Center. “When Girls Don’t Graduate We All Fail: A Call to Improve Graduation Rates for Girls.” http://www.nwlc.org/pdf/DropoutReport.pdf 203 National Women’s Law Center. “When Girls Don’t Graduate We All Fail: A Call to Improve Graduation Rates for Girls.” http://www.nwlc.org/pdf/DropoutReport.pdf 204 National Women’s Law Center. “When Girls Don’t Graduate We All Fail: A Call to Improve Graduation Rates for Girls.” http://www.nwlc.org/pdf/DropoutReport.pdf 205 National Women’s Law Center. “When Girls Don’t Graduate We All Fail: A Call to Improve Graduation Rates for Girls.” http://www.nwlc.org/pdf/DropoutReport.pdf 206 National Women’s Law Center. “When Girls Don’t Graduate We All Fail: A Call to Improve Graduation Rates for Girls.” http://www.nwlc.org/pdf/DropoutReport.pdf 207 National Women’s Law Center. “When Girls Don’t Graduate We All Fail: A Call to Improve Graduation Rates for Girls.” http://www.nwlc.org/pdf/DropoutReport.pdf 208 National Women’s Law Center. “When Girls Don’t Graduate We All Fail: A Call to Improve Graduation Rates for Girls.” http://www.nwlc.org/pdf/DropoutReport.pdf 209 National Women’s Law Center. “When Girls Don’t Graduate We All Fail: A Call to Improve Graduation Rates for Girls.” http://www.nwlc.org/pdf/DropoutReport.pdf 210 Cohen-Sandler, Roni. “Stressed-Out Girls: Helping Them Thrive in the Age of Pressure.” New York: Viking, 2005. 211 Cohen-Sandler, Roni. “Stressed-Out Girls: Helping Them Thrive in the Age of Pressure.” New York: Viking, 2005. 55

Dropping out of school is a multigenerational problem. Girls who drop out are more likely to see their own children drop out of school and suffer the same consequences.209

212 Cohen-Sandler, Roni. “Stressed-Out Girls: Helping Them Thrive in the Age of Pressure.” New York: Viking, 2005. 213 Bronson, Po and Ashley Merryman. “NurtureShock.” New York: Twelve, 2009. P. 159. 214 Bronson, Po and Ashley Merryman. “NurtureShock.” New York: Twelve, 2009. P. 159. 215 Bronson, Po and Ashley Merryman. “NurtureShock.” New York: Twelve, 2009. P. 159. 56


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Three-quarters of a million teens from developed countries around the world will become teen moms within the next twelve months.216 25% of 15 year olds in Australia, the United Kingdom, and the United States have already had sex.217 50% of 17 year olds in Australia, the United Kingdom, and the United States have already had sex.218ually active.219

Half of all U.S. girls ages 14 to 19 are sexually active. 219

Sexuality, Contraception, Pregnancy, & Sexually Transmitted Diseases

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Teenage girls who accept stereotyped statements about their bodies are less likely to use contraception.220 Girls who are comfortable with their bodies are more likely to use condoms. Girls less comfortable with their own bodies are intimidated to request or insist on condom use.221 The more a girl believes she should let boys control a relationship sexuality, the more likely she is to engage in highrisk behavior that threatens her health.222 216 UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre. “A League Table of Teen Births in Rich Countries.” Innocenti Report Card, Issue no. 3, July 3 2001. P.3. http://www.unicef-irc.org/publications/pdf/repcard3e.pdf 217 UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre. “A League Table of Teen Births in Rich Countries.” Innocenti Report Card, Issue no. 3, July 3 2001. P.4. http://www.unicef-irc.org/publications/pdf/repcard3e.pdf 218 UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre. “A League Table of Teen Births in Rich Countries.” Innocenti Report Card, Issue no. 3, July 3 2001. P.4. http://www.unicef-irc.org/publications/pdf/repcard3e.pdf 219 Amis, John. “1 in 4 teen girls have STD.” USA Today, May 27, 2008. http://www.usatoday.com/news/health/2008-03-11-std_n.htm 220 Impett, Emily A; Schooler, Deborah; and Deborah L. Tolman.”To Be Seen and Not Heard: Femininity Ideology and Adolescent Girls’ Sexual Health.” Archives of Sexual Behavior. 2006. 221 Impett, Emily A; Schooler, Deborah; and Deborah L. Tolman.”To Be Seen and Not Heard: Femininity Ideology and Adolescent Girls’ Sexual Health.” Archives of Sexual Behavior. 2006. 222 Impett, Emily A; Schooler, Deborah; and Deborah L. Tolman.”To Be Seen and Not Heard: Femininity Ideology and Adolescent Girls’ Sexual Health.” Archives of Sexual 58


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13.6% of pregnant women under the age of 20 report being physically abused by a former intimate partner prior to and during their pregnancy.223 i

33% of girls who drop out of high school in the U.S. report that pregnancy was a major factor in their decision to quit school school.224verty.225

Becoming a teen mother doubles the likelihood that a woman will live in poverty. 225 The US teen pregnancy rate is twice that of other industrialized nations.226 The US teen pregnancy rate is four times higher than the European Union’s average.227 22% of 20 year old women in the US are teen moms.228 The UK teen birth rate is twice as high as the teen birth rate in Germany, three times the teen birth rate in France, and Behavior. 2006. 223 Sargent Shriver Center on Poverty Law. “An Agenda for Change: An Illinois Perspective on Creating a Better Future for America’s Women and Girls.” December 2009. p.8. http://www.povertylaw.org/advocacy/publications/agenda-for-change.pdf 224 Sargent Shriver Center on Poverty Law. “An Agenda for Change: An Illinois Perspective on Creating a Better Future for America’s Women and Girls.” December 2009. p.8. http://www.povertylaw.org/advocacy/publications/agenda-for-change.pdf 225 UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre. “A League Table of Teen Births in Rich Countries.” Innocenti Report Card, Issue no. 3, July 3 2001. http://www.unicef-irc.org/publications/pdf/repcard3e.pdf 226 Darroch, Jacqueline E.; Singh, Susheela; Frost, Jennifer J.; and the Study Team. “Differences in Teenage Pregnancy Rates Among Five Developed Countries: The Roles of Sexual Activity and Contraceptive Use.” Family Planning Perspectives, Volume 33, Number 6, November/December 2001. 227 UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre. “A League Table of Teen Births in Rich Countries.” Innocenti Report Card, Issue no. 3, July 3 2001. http://www.unicef-irc.org/publications/pdf/repcard3e.pdf 228 UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre. “A League Table of Teen Births in Rich Countries.” Innocenti Report Card, Issue no. 3, July 3 2001. http://www.unicef-irc.org/publications/pdf/repcard3e.pdf

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six times the teen birth rate in the Netherlands.229 Because the “relationship between teenage birth rates and overall birth rates varies considerably from country to country,” UNICEF researchers have concluded that varying differences in teen pregnancy rates between countries is the result of nation-specific factors which are affecting teenagers.230 The developed nations with the highest teen birth rates among girls aged 15-19 are: the US (52.1 per thousand), the UK (30.8), New Zealand (29.8), the Slovic Republic (26.9), Hungary (26.5), Iceland (24.7), Portugal (21.2), Canada (20.2), Ireland (18.7), and Australia (18.4).231 Females are more susceptible to STDs than males.232 1of 4 American girls between the ages of 14 and 19 currently have a sexually transmitted disease; 3 million girls.233 Adolescent girls between the ages of 15 and 19 are more frequently infected with chlamydia and gonorrhea than any other age group (representing 409,531 reported cases in the US each year).234 The Centers for Disease Control has reported that Black American teenage girls have the highest prevalence of 229 BBC News. “Teen pregnancy: Why are rates rising?” May 27, 2005. http://news.bbc. co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/4584175.stm 230 UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre. “A League Table of Teen Births in Rich Countries.” Innocenti Report Card, Issue no. 3, July 3 2001. http://www.unicef-irc.org/publications/pdf/repcard3e.pdf 231 UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre. “A League Table of Teen Births in Rich Countries.” Innocenti Report Card, Issue no. 3, July 3 2001. http://www.unicef-irc.org/publications/pdf/repcard3e.pdf 232 Center for Disease Control. “Sexually Transmitted Disease Surveillance 2008.” Division of STD Prevention, November 2008. http://www.cdc.gov/std/stats08/surv2008Complete.pdf 233 Amis, John. “1 in 4 teen girls have STD.” USA Today, May 27, 2008. http://www. usatoday.com/news/health/2008-03-11-std_n.htm 234 Center for Disease Control. “Sexually Transmitted Disease Surveillance 2008.” Division of STD Prevention, November 2008. http://www.cdc.gov/std/stats08/surv2008Complete.pdf 60


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sexually transmitted diseases in the US- 48%, compared to 20% of White and Mexican female American adolescents.235 Untreated STDs are estimated to cause infertility in approximately 24,000 U.S. women each year.236 Since 1999, the annual number of Chlamydia cases in the United Kingdom has more than doubled.237 The Center for Disease Control estimates that “almost 19 million new sexually transmitted infections occur each year, almost half among 15- to 24-year-olds.”238 In 2007, 46,000 children and adults in North America were infected with AIDS.239 2,000 more children and adults were infected with AIDS in North America during 2007 than during 2001.240 31,000 children and adults were infected with AIDS in Western and Central Europe in 2007.241

235 Center for Disease Control. “2008 National STD Prevention Conference: Summaries of Highlighted Research.” March 11, 2008. http://www.cdc.gov/STDConference/2008/press/summaries-1march2008.htm#tues1 236 Center for Disease Control. “CDC Report Finds Adolescent Girls Continue To Bear A Major Burden of Common Sexually Transmitted Diseases.” November 16, 2009. http://www.cdc.gov/nchhstp/Newsroom/STDsurveillancepressrelease.html 237 AVERT. “STD Statistics and STDs in the UK.” http://www.avert.org/stdstatisticuk.htm 238 Center for Disease Control. “CDC Report Finds Adolescent Girls Continue To Bear A Major Burden of Common Sexually Transmitted Diseases.” November 16, 2009. http://www. cdc.gov/nchhstp/newsroom/STDsurveillancepressrelease.htmlhttp://www.cdc.gov/nchhstp/ Newsroom/STDsurveillancepressrelease.html 239 UNAIDS and the World Health Organization. “2007 AIDS Epidemic Update.” 2007, p.7. http://data.unaids.org/pub/EPISlides/2007/2007_epiupdate_en.pdf 240 UNAIDS and the World Health Organization. “2007 AIDS Epidemic Update.” 2007, p.7. http://data.unaids.org/pub/EPISlides/2007/2007_epiupdate_en.pdf 241 UNAIDS and the World Health Organization. “2007 AIDS Epidemic Update.” 2007, p.7. http://data.unaids.org/pub/EPISlides/2007/2007_epiupdate_en.pdf 61

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Among women aged 15-44 worldwide, gender-based violence accounts for more death and ill-health than cancer, traffic injuries, and malaria put together.242 81% of parents surveyed either believe teen dating violence is not an issue or admit they don’t know if it’s an issue.243 54% of parents admit that they haven’t spoken to their child about dating violence.244 nagers.245

Rape, Sexual Harrassment, Violence, & Abuse

Half of all reported date rapes occur among teenagers. 245 Females ages 16-24 are more vulnerable to intimate partner violence than any other age group (at a rate almost triple the national average).246 Among female victims of intimate partner violence, 94% are between the ages of 16 and 19.247 Between 1993 and 1999, 22% of all homicides against females ages 16-19 were committed by an intimate partner.248

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242 Sisters of Saint Joseph. “JUST Notes SPECIAL ISSUE ON Violence Against Women.” November 2008. http://www.sistersofstjosephorange.org/images/resources/Violence%20Against%20Women.pdf 243 “Women’s Health,” June/July 2004, Family Violence Prevention Fund and Advocates for Youth, 244 Empower Program, sponsored by Liz Claiborne Inc. and conducted by Knowledge Networks. Social Control, Verbal Abuse, and Violence Among Teenagers, (2000). 245 California Coalition Against Sexual Assault (CALCASA). “2002 Report: Research on Rape and Violence.”http://www.uasasonoma.org/teensite/statistics.htm#Child/ Teen%20Vicitmization. 246 U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, Special Report: Intimate Partner Violence and Age of Victim, 1993-99 (Oct. 2001, rev. 11/28/01). http://bjs.ojp. usdoj.gov/content/pub/pdf/ipva99.pdf 247 U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs, Bureau of Justice Statistics,7, (2001). 248 Bureau of Justice Statistics Press Release, “Violence Rates Among Intimate Partners Differ Greatly According to Age,” (10/29/01).

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One in five high school girls have been physically or sexually abused on a date, or both.249

58% of rape victims report being raped between the ages of 12-24.256

Intimate partner violence among adolescents is associated with increased risk of substance use, unhealthy weight control behaviors, sexual risk behaviors, pregnancy, and suicide.250

15% of rape victims are under the age of 12.257

Girls who have been victims of domestic or physical abuse often struggle with additional challenges when attempting to complete their education, including harassment, both in and out of the classroom, and threats to their safety on their commute to and from school.251

29% of rape victims are between the ages of 12 and 17.258 of

In 9 out of 10 rapes in which the offender is under 18, so is the victim. 255

Between 80% and 90% of sexually abused children are female (average age: 7 to 8 years).252

44% of rape victims are under the age of 18.259

44% of women who were date raped have considered suicide.253

8.5% of college men admit to sexually abusing women but don’t consider it rape.261

50% of youth reporting both dating violence and rape also reported attempting suicide, compared to 12.5% of non-abused girls and 5.4% of non-abused boys.254

Only 10% of rape victims report the assault.262

249 Silverman, Jay G.; Raj, Anita; Mucci, Lorelei A.; and Jeanne E. Hathaway. “Dating Violence Against Adolescent Girls and Associated Substance Use, Unhealthy Weight Control, Sexual Risk Behavior, Pregnancy, and Suicidality,” Journal of the American Medical Association, Vol. 286, (No. 5, 2001). P.572-579. 250 Molidor, Tolman, & Kober, (2000); National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, (2001). 251 Sargent Shriver Center on Poverty Law. “An Agenda for Change: An Illinois Perspective on Creating a Better Future for America’s Women and Girls.” December 2009. http://www.povertylaw.org/advocacy/publications/agenda-for-change.pdf 252 National Criminal Justice Reference Service. “Sexually Transmitted Diseases and Child Sexual Abuse.” December 2002. http://www.ncjrs.gov/html/ojjdp/portable_guides/ csa_02/key.html. 253 RAINN, University of South Florida, Federal Bureau of Investigation (Uniform Crime Statistics, 1996), U.S. Department of Justice, Violence against Women (Bureau of Justice Statistics, U.S. Dept. Of Justice). 254 D. M. Ackard, Minneapolis, MN, and D. Neumark-Sztainer, Division of Epidemiology, School of Public Health, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN, “Date Violence and Date Rape Among Adolescents: Associations with Disordered Eating Behaviors and Psychological Health,” Child Abuse & Neglect, 26 p.455-473, (2002). 255 Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), Maternal and Child Health Bureau, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Fact Sheet on Violence: Adolescents & Young Adults, 5, (2002).

256 Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), Maternal and Child Health Bureau, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), (2002). 257 RAINN, University of South Florida, Federal Bureau of Investigation (Uniform Crime Statistics, 1996), U.S. Department of Justice, Violence against Women (Bureau of Justice Statistics, U.S. Dept. Of Justice 258 RAINN, University of South Florida, Federal Bureau of Investigation (Uniform Crime Statistics, 1996), U.S. Department of Justice, Violence against Women (Bureau of Justice Statistics, U.S. Dept. Of Justice 259 RAINN, University of South Florida, Federal Bureau of Investigation (Uniform Crime Statistics, 1996), U.S. Department of Justice, Violence against Women (Bureau of Justice Statistics, U.S. Dept. Of Justice 260 RAINN, University of South Florida, Federal Bureau of Investigation (Uniform Crime Statistics, 1996), U.S. Department of Justice, Violence against Women (Bureau of Justice Statistics, U.S. Dept. Of Justice 261 RAINN, University of South Florida, Federal Bureau of Investigation (Uniform Crime Statistics, 1996), U.S. Department of Justice, Violence against Women (Bureau of Justice Statistics, U.S. Dept. Of Justice 262 RAINN, University of South Florida, Federal Bureau of Investigation (Uniform Crime Statistics, 1996), U.S. Department of Justice, Violence against Women (Bureau of Justice Statistics, U.S. Dept. Of Justice 263 RAINN, University of South Florida, Federal Bureau of Investigation (Uniform Crime Statistics, 1996), U.S. Department of Justice, Violence against Women (Bureau of

tim.255

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e.260

Only 25% of rape victims described the assault as rape.263

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47% of all rapes are committed by dates and romantic acquaintances.264

86% percent said they would confide in a friend, while only 7% said they would talk to police.270

84% of women who are date raped know their attacker.265

83% of 10th graders surveyed at the 4th Annual Teen Dating Abuse Summit reported that they would sooner turn to a friend for help with dating abuse than to a teacher, counselor, parent, or other caring adult.271

Women aged 16-24 are more than four times as likely to be date raped.266 90% of date rapes occur when either the victim or attacker has been drinking.267

25% of college women have been victims of rape.260 33% of men said they would date rape someone if they knew they wouldn’t be caught or punished for the offense.268 45% of girls know a friend or peer who has been pressured into either intercourse or oral sex.269 When female high school students were asked whom they would talk to if someone they date is attempting to control them, insults them, or physically harms them, Justice Statistics, U.S. Dept. Of Justice 264 RAINN, University of South Florida, Federal Bureau of Investigation (Uniform Crime Statistics, 1996), U.S. Department of Justice, Violence against Women (Bureau of Justice Statistics, U.S. Dept. Of Justice 265 RAINN, University of South Florida, Federal Bureau of Investigation (Uniform Crime Statistics, 1996), U.S. Department of Justice, Violence against Women (Bureau of Justice Statistics, U.S. Dept. Of Justice

266

267 RAINN, University of South Florida, Federal Bureau of Investigation (Uniform Crime Statistics, 1996), U.S. Department of Justice, Violence against Women (Bureau of Justice Statistics, U.S. Dept. Of Justice 268 RAINN, University of South Florida, Federal Bureau of Investigation (Uniform Crime Statistics, 1996), U.S. Department of Justice, Violence against Women (Bureau of Justice Statistics, U.S. Dept. Of Justice 269 Liz Claiborne Inc., Conducted by Teenage Research Unlimited, (February 2005). 67

Only 33% of teens who were in an abusive relationship told anyone about the abuse.272 Nearly one-half of adult sex offenders report committing their first sexual offenses prior to the age of 18.273 A study of 1,600 juvenile sexual assault offenders nationwide indicated that only around 33% of the juveniles perceived sex as a way to demonstrate love or caring for another person. 23.5% percent perceived sex as a way to feel power and control; 9.4% as a way to dissipate anger; 8.4% percent as a way to punish.274 Over 20% of rape victims have experienced more than one type of forced sexual act. Vaginal penetration has been reported to occur in approximately one-half and anal penetration in one-third of female victims of sexual abuse.275 270 Zwicker, Tiffany J. Education Policy Brief, “The Imperative of Developing Teen Dating Violence Prevention and Intervention Programs in Secondary Schools.” 12 Southern California Review of Law and Women’s Studies, 131, (2002). 271 The Northern Westchester Shelter, with Pace Women’s Justice Center, (April 2003). 272 Liz Claiborne Inc., Conducted by Teenage Research Unlimited, (February 2005). 273 Snipe, Ron et Al, “Recidivism in Young Adulthood, Adolescent Sexual Offenders Grown Up,” 25 Criminal Justice & Behavior, 109, 117, (1998). 274 California Coalition Against Sexual Assault (CALCASA). “2002 Report: Research on Rape and Violence.”http://www.uasasonoma.org/teensite/statistics.htm#Child/Teen%20 Vicitmization, (Last visited 10/1/04). 275 ERIC Identifier: ED430069, Publication Date: 1999-05-00, Author: Weiler, Jeanne, Source: ERIC Clearinghouse on Urban Education New York NY. Girls and Violence. ERIC Digest Number 143; National Criminal Justice Reference Service. “Sexually Transmitted Diseases and Child Sexual Abuse.” December 2002. http://www.ncjrs.gov/html/ojjdp/portable_guides/csa_02/key.html 68


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77% of female and 67% of male high school students endorse some form of sexual coercion, including unwanted kissing, hugging, genital contact, and sexual intercourse.276 In Canada, the cost of domestic violence amounts to approximately 1.6 billion per year, including medical care and lost productivity. Estimates in the United States place this figure between 10 and 67 billion.277

276 M. Jackson, F. Cram & F.W. Seymour, Journal of Family Violence, (2000). 277 Sisters of Saint Joseph. “JUST Notes SPECIAL ISSUE ON Violence Against Women.� November 2008. http://www.sistersofstjosephorange.org/images/resources/Violence%20Against%20Women.pdf 69

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U.S. Department of State’s “Trafficking in Persons Report” estimates that children make up 50% of the 600,000 – 800,000 people who are trafficked across international borders every year, the majority of whom are forced into the commercial sex trade.278 80% of transnational trafficking victims are women and girls.279 ng.280 ldwide.281

Human Trafficking

Human trafficking is the world’s largest criminal enterprise, after drugs and weapons, and it is the fastest growing. 280 The United Nations estimates that 1.2 million children are victims of human trafficking each year.282 95% of human trafficking victims experience physical and/or sexual violence and abuse during trafficking.283 278 U.S. Department of State. “Trafficking in Persons Report.” June 2004. p.16. http:// www.state.gov/documents/organization/34158.pdf 279 U.S. Department of State, Trafficking in Persons Report: 2007. http://www.humantrafficking.org/uploads/publications/2007_TIP_Report.pdf. 280 Miko, F. & Park, G. (March 2002). Trafficking in women and children: The U.S. and international response. U.S. Department of State. Retrieved July 22, 2009, from http:// fpc.state.gov/documents/organization/9107.pdf. 281 U.S. Department of State (June 2009). Trafficking in persons report 2009: Introduction [Electronic version]. From http://www.state.gov/g/tip/rls/tiprpt/2009. 282 UNICEF, UK “Child Trafficking Information Sheet.” January 2003. p.1. http://www. unicef.org.uk/unicefuk/policies/pdf/child_traffick-br.pdf 283 The London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, Stolen smiles: a summary report on the physical and psychological health consequences of women and adolescents trafficked in Europe (London, 2006). In: UN Global Initiative to Fight Human Trafficking. “Human Trafficking: The Facts.” p.1. http://www.unglobalcompact.org/docs/issues_ doc/labour/Forced_labour/HUMAN_TRAFFICKING_-_THE_FACTS_-_final.pdf

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Based on reported cases of human trafficking, the UK Government Home Office estimates that as many as 1,420 women may have been trafficked into the UK during 1998.284

The United Nation’s International Labor Organization estimates that there are 12.3 million adults and children at any given time in forced labor or commercial sexual servitude worldwide. 281 The U.S. Department of State estimates that between 14,500 and 17,500 international victims are trafficked into the U.S. each year.285 In the 1,229 cases of human trafficking reported in the United States between January 2007 and September 2008, over 90% of reported victims were female.286 Over 99% of sex trafficking victims in the United States are female287 63% of sex trafficking victims in the United States are US citizens.288 284 UNICEF, UK “Child Trafficking Information Sheet.” January 2003. p.2. http://www. unicef.org.uk/unicefuk/policies/pdf/child_traffick-br.pdf 285 U.S. Department of State, Trafficking in Persons Report: 2007. http://www.humantrafficking.org/uploads/publications/2007_TIP_Report.pdf 286 Bureau of Justice Statistics. “More than 1,200 Alleged Incidents of human Trafficking Reported in the US.” Thursday, January 15th 2009. http://bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov/content/ pub/press/cshti08pr.cfm 287 Bureau of Justice Statistics. “More than 1,200 Alleged Incidents of human Trafficking Reported in the US.” Thursday, January 15th 2009. http://bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov/content/ pub/press/cshti08pr.cfm 288 Bureau of Justice Statistics. “More than 1,200 Alleged Incidents of human Trafficking Reported in the US.” Thursday, January 15th 2009. http://bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov/content/ pub/press/cshti08pr.cfm

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27% of human trafficking victims in the US are under 18.289 The U.S. Department of Justice states that the average age of entry into child prostitution is 12-14 years old.290 Children are the victims in 31.8% of sex trafficking incidences.291 The average life expectancy of a child after entering prostitution is seven years, with homicide or HIV/AIDS as the main causes of death.292 ons.293

Over one million children are exploited in the global commercial sex trade each year.294 Over 100,000 children are exploited by forced prostitution every year in the United States.295

289 Bureau of Justice Statistics. “More than 1,200 Alleged Incidents of human Trafficking Reported in the US.” Thursday, January 15th 2009. http://bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov/content/pub/ press/cshti08pr.cfm 290 U.S. Department of Justice, Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (November 2007).Domestic sex trafficking of minors. From http://www.usdoj.gov/criminal/ceos/prostitution.html. 291 U.S. Department of Justice. “Bureau of Justice Statistics Special Report: Characteristics of Suspected Human Trafficking Incidents, 2007-8.” January 2009. P. 1. http://bjs.ojp. usdoj.gov/content/pub/pdf/cshti08.pdf 292 Fang, B. (2005, October 16). Young lives for sale: Why more kids are getting into the sex trade--and how the feds are fighting back [Electronic version]. U.S. News & World Report. http://www.usnews.com/usnews/news/articles/051024/24sextraffickers.htm 293 International Labour Organization. “Forced Labour Statistics Factsheet.” 2007. In: UN Global Initiative to Fight Human Trafficking. “Human Trafficking: The Facts.” P.2. http:// www.unglobalcompact.org/docs/issues_doc/labour/Forced_labour/HUMAN_TRAFFICKING_-_THE_FACTS_-_final.pdf 294 U.S. Department of State.” Bureau of Public Affairs Fact Sheet: The Facts About Child Sex Tourism” April 2005.http://www.uspolicy.be/Article.asp?ID=28F639D3-E0EA-41F29353-1241E6742F51 295 Shared Hope International. “The National Report on Domestic Minor Sex Trafficking: America’s Prostituted Children.” May 2009. P.11. http://www.sharedhope.org/files/SHI_National_Report_on_DMST_2009.pdf 74


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Victims of forced child prostitution reported that their pimp or trafficker usually gives them a quota, on average this demands that children perform sexual acts for 10 to 15 different people per night, although at sporting events or conventions some girls have reportedly been forced to perform sexual acts for as many as 45 people a night. 296 Sex traffickers who traffic child prostitutes prey on runaways because runaways are mentally, physically, and financially vulnerable297 As many as 2.8 million children runaway from home in the United States every year 298

Of the 31.6 billion US dollars profited from trafficked labor around the world each year, 49% is generated in developed nations. 293

296 Shared Hope International. “The National Report on Domestic Minor Sex Trafficking: America’s Prostituted Children.” May 2009. P.27. http://www.sharedhope.org/ files/SHI_National_Report_on_DMST_2009.pdf 297 Shared Hope International. “The National Report on Domestic Minor Sex Trafficking: America’s Prostituted Children.” May 2009. P.38. http://www.sharedhope.org/ files/SHI_National_Report_on_DMST_2009.pdf 298 Shared Hope International. “The National Report on Domestic Minor Sex Trafficking: America’s Prostituted Children.” May 2009. P.38. http://www.sharedhope.org/ files/SHI_National_Report_on_DMST_2009.pdf 75

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In the United States, approximately 5,000 young people die each year as a result of underage drinking, including: 1,900 deaths due to motor vehicle crashes, 1,600 deaths due to homicides, 300 deaths due to suicide, and hundreds of additional deaths due to falls, burns, drowning, and other injuries.299 tion.300

In a shift since 2002, girls now outnumber boys in underage alcohol consumption. 300

Substance Abuse

Drinking before age 15 increases the likelihood that teens will “struggle in school, abuse alcohol later in life, smoke cigarettes, and use other drugs.”301 Half of all US teens drink before age 15.302

299 National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Traffic Safety Facts 2002: Alcohol. DOT Pub. No. HS–809–606. Washington, DC: NHTSA, National Center for Statistics & Analysis, 2003. http://www-nrd.nhtsa.dot.gov/pdf/nrd-30/NCSA/ TSF2002/2002alcfacts.pdf.; Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), National Center for Injury Prevention and Control (NCIPC). Web-Based Injury Statistics Query and Reporting System (WISQARS), 2004. http://www.cdc.gov/ncipc/wisqars/default.htm.; Smith, G.S.; Branas, C.C.; and Miller, T.R. Fatal nontraffic injuries involving alcohol: A meta-analysis. Annals of Emergency Medicine 33:659–668, 1999. PMID: 10339681; Levy, D.T.; Miller, T.R.; and Cox, K.C. Costs of Underage Drinking. Washington, DC: U.S. Dept. of Justice, Office of Justice Programs, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, 1999. http://www.udetc.org/documents/costunderagedrinking.pdf.; Hingson, R., and Kenkel, D. Social, health, and economic consequences of underage drinking. In: National Research Council and Institute of Medicine. Bonnie, R.J., and O’Connell, M.E., eds. Reducing Underage Drinking: A Collective Responsibility. Washington, DC: National Academies Press, 2004. pp. 351–382. http://www.nap.edu/ books/0309089352/html 300 Elizabeth Armstrong, Christina McCarroll. The new face of underage drinking: teenage girls. The Christian Science Monitor, July 8, 2004. 301 Science Daily. “Curbing Teen Drinking Difficult In Urban Areas.” March 17, 2008. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/03/080317141214.htm 302 Science Daily. “Curbing Teen Drinking Difficult In Urban Areas.” March 17, 2008. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/03/080317141214.htm 77

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In a Girl Scout Research Institute study, 20% of girls reported that they would drink alcohol at a party without even worrying about it, compared to 14% of boys.303 week.304 Youths who start drinking in their mid-teens are more likely to become alcoholics305

Underage drinking costs the United States more than $58 billion every year.311

Alcohol kills 6 ½ times more teenagers than all other illicit drugs combined.306

Illegal drug use among teenagers is declining. However, the abuse of prescription drugs, especially pain relievers is increasing. Many teenagers assume that prescription drugs are safe, when in fact they are highly addictive and can cause severe side effects.312

1/3 of girls aged 14 and 15 drink alcohol every week. 304 Teens that drink are 50 times more likely to use cocaine than teens who never consume alcohol.307 63% of the youth who drink alcohol say that they initially got the alcohol from their own or their friends’ homes.308 309

40% of teens who started drinking at age 13 or younger developed alcohol dependence later in life, compared to only 10% of teens who began drinking after the age of 17.310

303 Girl Scout Research Institute. “Good Intentions: The Beliefs and Values of Teens and Tweens Today.” 2009. p.16. http://www.girlscouts.org/research/pdf/good_intentions_full_ report.pdf 304 Womack, Sarah. The Best Years of Our Lives? We don’t Think So. The Telegraph. February 24, 2005. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/1484278/The-best-years-ofour- lives-We-dont-think-so.html 305 Elizabeth Armstrong, Christina McCarroll. The new face of underage drinking: teenage girls. The Christian Science Monitor, July 8, 2004. 306 Teen Drug Abuse. Troubling Teen Drug Use Statistics http://www.teendrugabuse.us/ teendrugstatistics.html 307 Teen Drug Abuse. “Troubling Teen Drug Use Statistics” http://www.teendrugabuse.us/ teendrugstatistics.html 308 Teen Drug Abuse. “Troubling Teen Drug Use Statistics” http://www.teendrugabuse.us/ teendrugstatistics.html 309 Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). Results from the 2002 National Survey on Drug Use and Health: National Findings. NHSDA Series H–22, DHHS Pub. No. SMA 03–3836. Rockville, MD: SAMHSA, Office of Applied Studies, 2003. Available online at: http://www.oas.samhsa.gov/nhsda/2k2nsduh/ Results/2k2Results.htm 310 Teen Drug Abuse. “Troubling Teen Drug Use Statistics” http://www.teendrugabuse.us/ 79

In 2003, the average age of first use of alcohol was about 14, compared to about 17½ in 1965. 309

1 in every 5 American teens has used a “powerful narcotic pain reliever” for recreational purposes.313 10% of teens report that they have attended a rave, and ecstasy and other drugs were available at more than twothirds of these raves.314 While many parents are aware of the threat that illegal drugs pose to their teens, they are often not aware of their children’s familiarity with prescription narcotics.315 20% of 8th graders report that they have tried marijuana.316 teendrugstatistics.html 311 Teen Drug Abuse. “Troubling Teen Drug Use Statistics” http://www.teendrugabuse. us/teendrugstatistics.html 312 Teen Drug Abuse. “Troubling Teen Drug Use Statistics” http://www.teendrugabuse. us/teendrugstatistics.html 313 The Partnership for a Drug-Free America. “Getting High on Prescription and Overthe-Counter Drugs Is Dangerous A Guide to Keeping your Teenager Safe in a Changing World.” http://download.ncadi.samhsa.gov/ken/pdf/PHD1113/PHD1113.pdf. 314 Teen Drug Abuse. Troubling Teen Drug Use Statistics http://www.teendrugabuse.us/ teendrugstatistics.html 315 The Partnership for a Drug-Free America. “Getting High on Prescription and Overthe-Counter Drugs Is Dangerous A Guide to Keeping your Teenager Safe in a Changing World.” http://download.ncadi.samhsa.gov/ken/pdf/PHD1113/PHD1113.pdf. 316 Teen Drug Abuse. “Troubling Teen Drug Use Statistics” http://www.teendrugabuse. 80


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28% of teens know a classmate or friend who has used ecstasy.317 Approximately 15% of 10th and 12th graders have used amphetamines.318 An estimated 1.8 million American teens and tweens age twelve and older are current users of cocaine.319 1 in 5 US teens have taken Vicodin for recreational purposes.320 1 in 10 teens have taken the stimulants Ritalin or Adderall for recreational purposes.321

21% of high school girls reported having used some form of tobacco product within the past month. 326 1 in 11 teens admit to using cough medicine to get high.322 The American Lung Association estimates that every minute 4,000 teens will take their first drag off a cigarette. Of those 4,800, about 2,000 will go on to be chain smokers.323 us/teendrugstatistics.html 317 Teen Drug Abuse. “Troubling Teen Drug Use Statistics” http://www.teendrugabuse.us/ teendrugstatistics.html 318 Teen Drug Abuse. “Troubling Teen Drug Use Statistics” http://www.teendrugabuse.us/ teendrugstatistics.html 319 Teen Drug Abuse. “Troubling Teen Drug Use Statistics” http://www.teendrugabuse.us/ teendrugstatistics.html 320 The Partnership for a Drug-Free America. “Getting High on Prescription and Over-theCounter Drugs Is Dangerous A guide to keeping your teenager safe in a changing world.” http://download.ncadi.samhsa.gov/ken/pdf/PHD1113/PHD1113.pdf 321 The Partnership for a Drug-Free America. “Getting High on Prescription and Over-theCounter Drugs Is Dangerous A guide to keeping your teenager safe in a changing world.” http://download.ncadi.samhsa.gov/ken/pdf/PHD1113/PHD1113.pdf 322 The Partnership for a Drug-Free America. “Getting High on Prescription and Over-theCounter Drugs Is Dangerous A guide to keeping your teenager safe in a changing world.” http://download.ncadi.samhsa.gov/ken/pdf/PHD1113/PHD1113.pdf 323 Teen Drug Abuse. Teens and Smoking Tobacco. http://www.teendrugabuse.us/ teensmoking.html

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smoking. 324 month.325

Threats to Girlhood

20% of high school students are regular cigarette smokers, half of who report that that have tried to quit smoking within the past year.326 Girls who smoke tend to have weaker attachments to parents and family and stronger attachments to peers and friends.327

Every day nearly 5,000 children under 18 become established smokers; one third of these will die from a disease attributed to smoking. 325 Girls who smoke tend to take risks and be rebellious, are less committed to school or religion, and are more likely to believe that smoking can control weight and negative moods.328 lt.329

324 Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. “Overview of Findings from the 2002 National Survey on Drug Use and Health.” 2003. http://www.eric. ed.gov/ERICDocs/data/ericdocs2sql/content_storage_01/0000019b/80/1b/53/1e.pdf 325 American Cancer Society. “Questions About Smoking, Tobacco, and Health” http:// www.cancer.org/docroot/PED/content/PED_10_2x_Questions_About_Smoking_Tobacco_and_Health.asp 326 American Cancer Society. “Questions About Smoking, Tobacco, and Health” http:// www.cancer.org/docroot/PED/content/PED_10_2x_Questions_About_Smoking_Tobacco_and_Health.asp 327 National Research Center for Women and Families. Smoking and Girls: A Deadly Mix http://www.center4research.org/smoking.html 328 National Research Center for Women and Families. Smoking and Girls: A Deadly Mix http://www.center4research.org/smoking.html 329 Chiolero, Arnaud; Jacot-Sadowski, Isabelle; Faeh, David. Paccaud, Fred; and Jacques Cornuz. “Association of Cigarettes Smoked Daily with Obesity in a General Adult Population.” Obesity, (2007) 15, 1311–1318. http://www.nature.com/oby/journal/ v15/n5/full/oby2007153a.html; Saarni,Suoma; Pietiläinen, Kirsi; Kantonen, Suvi; Rissanen, Aila;and Jaakko Kaprio. “Teen girls who smoke are at greater obesity risk. February 2009. American Journal of Public Health, February 2009, Vol 99, No. 2.

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The fact that teen smoking rates are steadily increasing is disturbing considering that about 80% of adult smokers started smoking as teenagers.330 90% percent of adults who smoke started by the age of 21, and half of them became regular smokers by their 18th birthday.331

Smoking 10 cigarettes or more a day increases a girl’s risk of being obese as an adult. 329

330 Teen Drug Abuse. Teens and Smoking Tobacco. http://www.teendrugabuse.us/ teensmoking.html 331 Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. “Overview of Findings from the 2002 National Survey on Drug Use and Health.” 2003. http://www.eric. ed.gov/ERICDocs/data/ericdocs2sql/content_storage_01/0000019b/80/1b/53/1e.pdf 83

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ent.332

Threats to Girlhood

Although teen drivers represent only approximately 6% of total drivers, they account for 14% of the fatal crashes.333 Almost 6,000 teenagers are killed each year in motor vehicle crashes.334 Approximately 300,000 teenagers are injured in motor vehicle crashes every year.335

Reckless Driving Habits

Teenage drivers between the ages of 16 and 19 are four times more likely to be involved in a car accident. 332 16 to 19 year olds have a crash rate almost twice that of 20 to 24-year-olds, almost 3 times that of 25 to 29-yearolds, and more than 4 times that of 30 to 69-year olds.336 r.337

332 Centers for Disease Control. “U.S. Motor Vehicle Injury Facts.” http://www.cdc.gov/ ncipc/whd2004/information/mv-facts.pdf 333 National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Traffic Safety Facts: 2004 Data— Young Drivers. Washington, DC: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration; 2005. US Department of Transportation publication HS 809-918. 334 Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, Highway Loss Data Institute. “Fatality Facts 2005: Teenagers.” www.iihs.org/research/fatality_facts/teenagers.html (2005). In: AllState, Discovery Education. “Drive it Right: talking to Teens about Safe Driving.” P. 3. http://allstate.discoveryeducation.com/resource/ResourceGuide.pdf 335 The Allstate Foundation Survey. “Chronic: A Report on the State of Teen Driving 2005.” In: AllState, Discovery Education. “Drive it Right: talking to Teens about Safe Driving.” P. 3. http://allstate.discoveryeducation.com/resource/ResourceGuide.pdf 336 Williams AF. Teenage drivers: patterns of risk. J Safety Res. 2003;34:5–15. 337 National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. “Traffic Safety Facts: Graduated Driver Licensing System.” February 2007. In: AllState, Discovery Education. “Drive it Right: talking to Teens about Safe Driving.” P.8. http://allstate.discoveryeducation.com/ resource/ResourceGuide.pdf 85

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Teenagers may intellectually understand the potential consequences of reckless driving and the importance of vehicle safety, but are less likely to feel concerned about potential consequences while behind the wheel.338 When driving with friends in the car, peer pressure causes teen drivers to exhibit riskier driving habits.339

1 in every 4 teen crashes is caused by a drunk teen driver. 337 The chances that a teen driver will be in a fatal crash doubles if there is a male teen passenger present.340 44% of teen drivers admit that they are safer, more responsible drivers when they do not have friends in the car, but the same percentage of teen drivers report that they “‘often’ or ‘very often’ drive with friends in the car.”341 59% of parents are aware of the fact that car accidents kill more teens than drugs, alcohol, or tobacco. And yet, “70% of parents talk to their children about the dangers of drugs and tobacco at age 12 or younger,” but “only 338 Geidd, Jay, M.D., Chief, Brain Imaging, Child Psychiatry Branch, National Institute of Mental Health; “Chronic: A Report on the State of Teen Driving 2005.” In: AllState, Discovery Education. “Drive it Right: talking to Teens about Safe Driving.” P.3. http:// allstate.discoveryeducation.com/resource/ResourceGuide.pdf 339 Williams, A.F. “Teenage Passengers in Motor Vehicle Crashes: A Summary of Current Research.” Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. December 2001. In: AllState, Discovery Education. “Drive it Right: talking to Teens about Safe Driving.” http://allstate.discoveryeducation.com/resource/ResourceGuide.pdf 340 Williams, A.F., “Teenage Passengers in Motor Vehicle Crashes: A Summary of Current Research,” Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. (December 2001). In: AllState, Discovery Education. “Drive it Right: talking to Teens about Safe Driving.” http://allstate.discoveryeducation.com/resource/ResourceGuide.pdf 341 The Allstate Foundation Survey. “Chronic: A Report on the State of Teen Driving 2005.” In: AllState, Discovery Education. “Drive it Right: talking to Teens about Safe Driving.” P.8. http://allstate.discoveryeducation.com/resource/ResourceGuide.pdf 87

27% of parents talk to their children about the dangers of unsafe driving at age 12 or younger.”342 Over 49% of teens report texting as a distraction. 343 82% of teens say they use cell phones while driving.344 51% of girls are likely to use a cell phone to talk, text, or email while driving, compared 38% of boys.345 23% of teens admit to drinking and driving.346 48% of girls admit to speeding by more than 10 m.p.h. over the speed limit, compared to 36% of boys 347 16% of girls say they drive aggressively. 348 77% of teens say they have felt unsafe with another teen’s driving.349 More than 80% of teens rate parents as their No. 1 driving influence, but are spending less behind-the-wheel time with their parents350

342 AllState, Discovery Education. “Drive it Right: talking to Teens about Safe Driving.” p.15. http://allstate.discoveryeducation.com/resource/ResourceGuide.pdf 343 The Allstate Foundation Survey: “Shifting Teen Attitudes: The State of Teen Driving 2009”. In http://www.allstate.com/foundation/teen-driving/Shifting-Teen-Attitudes.aspx 344 The Allstate Foundation Survey: “Shifting Teen Attitudes: The State of Teen Driving 2009”. In http://www.allstate.com/foundation/teen-driving/Shifting-Teen-Attitudes.aspx 345 The Allstate Foundation Survey: “Shifting Teen Attitudes: The State of Teen Driving 2009”. In http://www.allstate.com/foundation/teen-driving/Shifting-Teen-Attitudes.aspx 346 The Allstate Foundation Survey: “Shifting Teen Attitudes: The State of Teen Driving 2009”. In http://www.allstate.com/foundation/teen-driving/Shifting-Teen-Attitudes.aspx 347 The Allstate Foundation Survey: “Shifting Teen Attitudes: The State of Teen Driving 2009”. In http://www.allstate.com/foundation/teen-driving/Shifting-Teen-Attitudes.aspx 348 The Allstate Foundation Survey: “Shifting Teen Attitudes: The State of Teen Driving 2009”. In http://www.allstate.com/foundation/teen-driving/Shifting-Teen-Attitudes.aspx 349 The Allstate Foundation Survey: “Shifting Teen Attitudes: The State of Teen Driving 2009”. In http://www.allstate.com/foundation/teen-driving/Shifting-Teen-Attitudes.aspx 350 The Allstate Foundation Survey: “Shifting Teen Attitudes: The State of Teen Driving 2009”. In http://www.allstate.com/foundation/teen-driving/Shifting-Teen-Attitudes.aspx 88


Threats to Girlhood

Threats to Girlhood

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2010 Threats to Girlhood Report  

Threats to Girlhood include all of the issues, mindsets, factors, trends, and circumstances that impact girls’ lifelong health, wellness, ha...

2010 Threats to Girlhood Report  

Threats to Girlhood include all of the issues, mindsets, factors, trends, and circumstances that impact girls’ lifelong health, wellness, ha...

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