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[Opinion of the citizens, opinion of the officials (editorial)] Opinion de los ciudadanos, opinion de los fieles.
GIRE. 1997 Sep; (14):1.No government can survive without consulting the opinion of the governed. Even dictators cannot be completely ignorant of the needs and sentiments of the population. This truth applies as well in intimate aspects of life related to conscience and morality. Mexican federal and local legislators lack means of consulting the citizenry. Only a few localities have the type of procedures to determine the will of the electorate used in nations of long democratic tradition. Abortion and other matters of conscience should be subjected to referendum. At present, referenda are impracticable in Mexico. Reflecting the situation in secular society, the Catholic Church hierarchy lacks means of consulting that would at least temper the authoritarian condemnation by the Pope of contraception and birth control and the obsessive opposition to condoms, the best HIV preventive. It is difficult to gauge the true weight of the pope s influence in Mexico, but many lawmakers and authorities consider it definitive. The Church hierarchy neither consults the faithful nor listens to those within the Church who recommend modification of doctrines regarding reproduction. Surveys reveal that Catholic men and women use contraception, and women have obtained abortions without considering themselves outside the religious community. Legislators and officials should know what people really think, and citizens should be provided with information to enable them to form their own opinions.
SOCIAL SCIENCE QUARTERLY. 1998 Dec; 79(4):734-53.This paper verifies why the relationships between the measures of environmental concern and standard demographic variables are inconsistent. Data were obtained from four biennial Texas Environmental Surveys conducted during November and December of 1990, 1992, 1994 and 1996. Regression analyses were used in examining its relations. Findings showed that the two demographic variables correlating with environmental concerns are age and education. However, other variables such as ethnicity, religiosity and gender need clarification for further research. The demographic correlation of enhancing jobs and economic growth or reducing taxes, and the size of government, reflects the particular tradeoffs associated with environmental protection. In addition, people differ in the resources availability and accepted tradeoffs because of the environmental concern that stimulates inconsistent responses. The data made a great difference on how environmental concern is measured.
ESTE PAIS. 1996 Jul; (64):20-5.The Mexican Association Against Violence Towards Women (COVAC) surveyed 3300 men and women aged 18-65 in Mexico City and nine other cities in 1995 to assess public opinion regarding domestic violence. 17% of respondents were of high socioeconomic status, 33% of middle status, and 50% of low status. 61% of respondents stated that children are the family members most frequently abused physically or mentally, 21% identified mothers, and 10% other female family members. 96% of respondents considered physical and mental mistreatment to be forms of violence. 70% considered physical mistreatment and psychological damage to occur very frequently. 21% knew of someone who was abused in the preceding 6 months. 74% of the abused persons were women. 52% were mothers and 30% were daughters. Of the abused males, 21% were 13-17 years old and 71% were 5-24 years of age. 69% were sons and 12% were fathers. Only 20% of cases were reported to any authority. 46% of the cases reported led to jailing of the aggressor. 43% of the cases were not reported for fear of provoking greater violence. 83% of respondents approved of separation of the aggressor from the family if necessary. 90% approved of seeking orientation or legal protection from an authority, and 94% approved of shelters for abused women and children. 54% knew of the existence of some legal mechanism to confront violence even though there is no legislation in Mexico specifically against domestic violence.
New York, New York, Rockefeller Brothers Fund, Global Interdependence Initiative, 1997. 36 p. (Paper No. 1)This paper is based on an October 7-8, 1996, conference held at the Pocantico Conference Center in the US. The meetings were hosted by the Rockefeller Brothers Fund and the World Bank. Discussion focused on social stewardship (SS) and the need for cooperation among nations, if interdependent nations are to advance their common interests in economic growth, military security, and the promotion of health, social stability, and human potential SS. This paper is also based on subsequent discussions and other sources. SS is valued for reasons of national security, as a building block of economic growth, and as a reflection of moral values. The US budget does not reflect a meaningful measure of commitment to SS. The US now ranks 4th in the world in bilateral assistance, behind Japan, France, and Germany. Multilateral aid has also declined. The budget declines reflect political and budgetary constraints. Assistance has shifted to disaster relief. Conference participants did not answer whether the decline in assistance meant there were no other alternatives for achieving SS. Chapters in this paper refer to the challenge of global interdependence, the retreat from SS, and building support for SS. Political leadership is key to raising the importance of international issues and SS. A critical mass of Americans could generate the political will. Nongovernmental organizations are key to mobilizing the community in a constituency-building effort. The effort must be directed to women, people of faith, youth, educators, business people, labor union leadership, mass media owners and employees, and foundation staff and trustees. Multilateral and bilateral agencies need to be changed to meet current needs. It is time to recognize that prosperity and security are closely connected to human well-being.
INTERNATIONAL MIGRATION REVIEW. 1999 Summer; 33(2):455-67.This article is part of a larger study of public attitudes toward immigration in seven countries that historically and currently have had different policies and practices vis-a-vis immigration. The countries involved are Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Great Britain, Japan and the United States. The time frame for which most of the public opinion data will be reported is from 1970 through 1995. The data have been collected from national surveys that were conducted in each of the countries. (EXCERPT)
AIDS WEEKLY PLUS. 1999 Jul 12-19; 7.AIDS-related mortality has declined significantly since the mid-1990s, although the rate of new infections has remained steady. While recent data indicate that fewer teenagers are having sex and more are using condoms, 20% of AIDS cases in Massachusetts are young adults who were probably infected as teens. There is now a rebirth of denial and considerable complacency about the reality of the HIV/AIDS pandemic. Part of that complacency stems from the development and use of protease inhibitors since 1996, a class of drugs capable of extending the lives of people infected with HIV. The initial success rates of these drugs have led many people to believe that AIDS is no longer life-threatening, but rather manageable over the long term. However, these drugs are complex and there is much misinformation about their success rates. The effectiveness of protease inhibitors has been short-lived in many patients, and sometimes ineffective in people who could not adhere to the strict drug regimen. Thousands of people participated in AIDS Action Committee's 14th annual AIDS Walk to raise awareness and pay tribute to those who have been affected by the disease.
Owings Mills, Maryland, MPT, 1994. , 67,  p.This report describes the Maryland Public Television (MPT) Women's Global Film Project (WGFP). WGFP developed a 5-part documentary television series on the lives of women around the world for national prime time broadcast, outreach, and education in the US and for distribution abroad. The project produced a multidisciplinary and cross-cultural assessment of the global impact of policies and practices on women. The series revealed the common interests of women globally, common goals, and innovative solutions to problems. The series was scheduled for airing in 1995, in conjunction with the 1995 Beijing Conference on Women. A delegation of 6 female producers planned to host a screening of the series at the Beijing conference. The International Fellowship Program provided for the training of 13 female film-makers from around the world in film production at MPT for 6 weeks. Community and grassroots women's groups or film-making institutes will have free access to the series. A semiannual newsletter will link women film-makers with each other. Other resources available include an online computer description of the series content and production resources. A computer database will contain an international, multidisciplinary listing of all organizations and individuals that were involved in the project. Lessons plans are available for college level women's studies courses. A permanent film archive will contain all of the interviews conducted. This report is organized into chapters on project content and format, outreach and distribution, the qualifications of the production team, financing and donor support, and progress to date. Appendices include lists of advisors, film-makers, and interviewed persons.
TRANSITIONS. 1999 Mar; 10(3):12-3.US adults are generally uncomfortable with the subject of adolescent sexuality. As such, they either pretend that teenagers do not have sex or try to control and limit the information which young people receive about sex and contraception. Sexual abstinence until marriage is the US Congressionally mandated message to students. In contrast, adults, and society in general, in the Netherlands, France, and Germany are comfortable with adolescent sexuality, and understand that teens have sex as a natural part of growing into sexually healthy adults. Perhaps paradoxically, adolescents in these 3 countries have first intercourse 1-2 years later than do US teens. The US also has a higher teen birth rate than the Netherlands, France, and Germany, as well as Morocco, Albania, Brazil, and more than 50 other developing countries. The teen birth rate in the Netherlands is almost 8 times lower than that of the US. Adolescent HIV and STD rates are also higher in the Netherlands, France, and Germany than in the US. At the heart of these 3 European countries' success in achieving low teen pregnancy and HIV/STD rates is a cultural openness and acceptance of adolescent sexuality which respects young people's rights and responsibilities as sexually maturing members of society. Rather than following the American model of trying to prevent young people from having sex, the Dutch, Germans, and French teach and empower their youths to behave responsibly when they decide to have sex. The US could learn from the Dutch, French, and German experiences with adolescent sexuality in developing and implementing a more balanced approach to adolescent sexuality.
APPLIED ECONOMICS LETTERS. 1998 Oct; 5(10):599-601.This study empirically investigates the impact of state income tax policy on U.S. interstate migration [of the labor force] for the period 1985-89. It finds that people vote with their feet and prefer to move so as to minimize their state income tax liabilities. (EXCERPT)
JOURNAL OF SEX RESEARCH. 1998 Nov; 35(4):390-6.Using both national surveys and surveys of self-identified gay men in the United States, the numbers, age distribution, life expectancy, and marital status of men who have sex with men is examined. It is concluded that five types can be distinguished.... These five categories have different patterns of sexual behavior, and the numbers in each category are influenced by changing social conditions, in particular the growth of gay neighborhoods, and public tolerance. The typology is used to explain the low rate of reported HIV transmission from bisexual men to their female partners. (EXCERPT)
PASSAGES. 1990 Summer; 10(2):1-3.Both others and young men themselves perceive boys and young men as being mischievous and interested only in sex from girls. These perceptions need to change in the interest of fostering male reproductive health. Several health service and education agencies have realized that a significant factor in the lack of male involvement in reproductive health decisions is that men have been excluded from the planning of relevant programs and services. Furthermore, there is only little information on the feelings and needs of young men. Programs which focus upon the many aspects of boys' lives will tend to be more successful than those which focus only upon their reproductive capacities. Programs which collaborate with families and other community resources help boys learn appropriate male roles and manly behavior, including the need to become fathers only at the proper, chosen point in their lives. New approaches to meeting young men's needs in New York, Africa, Mexico, and Costa Rica are described.
AMERICAN JOURNAL OF PUBLIC HEALTH. 1999 Jan; 89(1):92-4.The prevalence of vasectomy increased in the US from protecting approximately 5% of contracepting married women to about 19% by the early 1990s. However, 2 studies published in 1993 noting a potential link between vasectomy and prostate cancer, publications refuting the association and the US National Institutes of Health's recommendation to not change vasectomy practice, subsequent debate in the professional literature, and negative publicity in the national media may have influenced the acceptance and practice of vasectomy in the US. The authors conducted national probability surveys of urology, general surgery, and family practices in 1992 and 1996 to assess the effect of the controversy upon the acceptance and practice of vasectomy in the US. 10.3 vasectomies per 1000 men aged 25-49 years were performed in 1991, compared to 9.9/1000 in 1995. Neither the estimated total number of vasectomies performed nor the population rate changed significantly between 1991 and 1995. 31% and 28% of all physician practices provided vasectomy in 1991 and 1995, respectively, a nonstatistically significant change over the 4 years.
EPI NEWSLETTER. 1998 Dec; 20(6):5.Dr. Louis W. Sullivan, President of the Morehouse School of Medicine in Georgia and former Secretary of the US Department of Health and Human Services, currently co-chairs the newly-created Vaccine Initiative sponsored by the Infectious Diseases Society of America and the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society to foster a positive and informed public dialogue on immunization. Considerable progress has been made through vaccination in preventing and controlling infectious diseases, rendering vaccine-preventable diseases to an all-time low level in the US and in many other areas of the world. There remains, however, a long way to go before all vaccine-preventable diseases will be eliminated. Efforts are needed to break down the barriers which prevent access to immunization, including maintaining and strengthening the public's trust in vaccines and immunization programs. Reports in the lay press which question the safety of routine immunization simply scare parents with unsupported accounts of the dangers of vaccines and impede the overall immunization effort. Efforts need to be improved to communicate what is known about the value of vaccines to both individuals and communities.
JOICFP NEWS. 1999 Jan; (295):3.In an effort to increase public awareness in Japan of global population and reproductive health issues, 5 Japanese journalists from Japan Broadcasting Corporation (NHK), Kyodo News, Nihon Keizai Shimbun, Yomiuri Shimbun, and FM Hokkaido traveled with a JOICFP team in Mexico for 12 days in October 1988. It is hoped that, following their experience in Mexico, the journalists will help to create favorable public opinion in Japan toward development assistance in population. The UNFPA Mexico office, the Japanese embassy, JICA, central and local ministries of health, and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) in Mexico City and rural areas were visited during the tour. Specific sites and programs visited include a NGO in Catemaco, Veracruz state, a junior high school sexuality education program funded by the Packard Foundation, a community guest house for child deliveries in Puebla State, and a MEXFAM clinic funded by the owner of a towel factory. As a result of the study tour, an 8-minute program was aired on NHK, featuring an interview with the director of MEXFAM. The journalists learned from the tour.
GIRE. 1998 Sep; (18):5.The debate on abortion unleashed in July 1998 by remarks of Mexico's Secretary of Health has prompted dozens of individuals and institutions from all sectors to make their views known. The principal arguments have been that the secrecy in which abortion is practiced is damaging to public health and mental health in a society where between 850,000 and 1 million abortions and around 1000 maternal deaths from abortion occur annually. Considering that it is a grave problem experienced by millions of Mexicans, the scarcity of medical information and over-abundance of religious ideology are regrettable. The opposition of the Catholic hierarchy and allied groups to decriminalization, or even to consultation of the people, reveal fear that what surveys reveal is true: society is inclined to leave decisions about abortion to the woman and her partner. At least three indications are recognized as justifiable motives for abortion by a large number of people: rape, preserving the life of the mother, and congenital anomalies.
JOURNAL OF THOUGHT. 1996 Spring; 31(1):9-24.This essay rejects as unfounded the following assumptions, upon which the idea that adolescent pregnancy in the US is the root of all evil is based: that patterns of adolescent pregnancy and childbirth have changed significantly over time; that daughters of adolescent mothers become adolescent mothers; that adolescent pregnancy has (causes) undesirable consequences; and that adolescent pregnancy is an adolescent problem rather than an adult problem. The essay then proposes that the real meaning of the emotionally charged public discourse on adolescent pregnancy reflects not only a real and appropriate concern for the resulting children but also a cultural struggle with moral questions of worth and dignity, which is largely hidden from public view. After an introduction, the essay refers to the research to prove that the adolescent fertility rate in the US is lower than in previous decades, that the role of adult men fathering babies with adolescent women is conspicuously absent in the widely acknowledged causal chain, and that adolescent mothers do not perpetuate a cycle of adolescent pregnancy with dire consequences. The next section considers how young mothers have become construed as a social threat (a "ticking crime bomb"), even as economic factors increased the "opportunity gap," and how this denigration devalues their children; it concludes that much can be learned by exploring the reasons for this public denigration and uncovering how the resulting habits of thought and judgement affect young students. The last section uses an interaction between a school principal and a young mother and her family to highlight a discussion of the response of educators to adolescent parenthood.
Women's preferences for vaginal antimicrobial contraceptives IV. Attributes of a formulation that would protect from STD / AIDS.
CONTRACEPTION. 1998 Oct; 58(4):251-5.Market research conducted in Campinas, Sao Paulo State, Brazil, in 1996-97 investigated the attributes that potential users considered acceptable and unacceptable in a vaginal antimicrobial contraceptive. 635 women from two age groups (adolescent and adult) and two socioeconomic groups (low and middle/high) were enrolled. 99% of respondents indicated a preference for a vaginal formulation that provided dual protection against unwanted pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), including HIV. Overall, 40% of women stated they would use a dual protective method even if it was messy. Acceptance of messiness was lowest (35%) among adolescent respondents. Irritation, itching, swelling, or burning were unacceptable side effects to the vast majority of women. 96% would use a vaginal method if it could only be inserted with an applicator, but this rate dropped to 75% if the method required manual insertion. 55% would use the method if it appeared on their partner's penis. Overall, 50% would accept a method that required refrigeration during very warm days--but rates were higher among adult women and those of low socioeconomic status. There was a clear preference for a formulation that was transparent or had a very light color. About 45% of women were willing to pay up to US$5 for each application of the product, while another third said they would pay $1. Socioeconomic status did not exert an effect on price considerations, confirming the importance to all women of protection against both pregnancy and STDs.
Women's preferences for vaginal antimicrobial contraceptives III. Choice of a formulation, applicator, and packaging.
CONTRACEPTION. 1998 Oct; 58(4):245-9.New vaginal antimicrobial contraceptives are under development to provide women with a means of protection against sexually transmitted diseases, including HIV, under their control. A descriptive study conducted in Campinas, Sao Paulo State, Brazil, in 1996-97 assessed the preferences of 635 adolescent and adult women from low, middle, and high socioeconomic groups in terms of dosage forms, width, length, applicator color, and packaging. 38-40% of women in the two age and two social class groups indicated a preference for a gel formulation and about 18% favored a cream. A film was the least acceptable formulation. The main reasons given for selecting a particular vaginal formulation were ease of use (39%), no or pleasant odor (27%), no color (23%), ability to use an applicator for insertion (21%), no requirement to wait for the product to dissolve (15%), non-messiness (13%), and ease of storage and transport (12%). The main reasons for rejecting a formulation were discomfort (32%), plastic appearance (25%), mistrust of the method's effectiveness (22%), insertion difficulties (19%), and messiness (13%). A prefilled single-dose applicator was preferred by about 60% of respondents. These findings can be used to guide the development of novel products that are easy and fast to use as well as effective and acceptable.
Women's preferences for vaginal antimicrobial contraceptives II. Preferred characteristics according to women's age and socioeconomic status.
CONTRACEPTION. 1998 Oct; 58(4):239-44.Efforts to prevent the transmission of HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) have focused on woman-controlled vaginal methods. To identify the characteristics women prefer in a new vaginal contraceptive method and thereby guide product development, a descriptive study of 635 women from Campinas, Sao Paulo State, Brazil, was conducted in 1996-97. A total of 310 women were 15-19 years of age and 325 were 20-45 years old. The two age groups were further divided so that half the women were of low socioeconomic status and half were of middle or high status. Most women in the 4 subgroups (73.5-82.8%) selected the vaginal cream over a suppository for the preferred form of an ideal vaginal formulation. A clear or white-colored product with no taste or odor was preferred. Almost all women wanted the method to protect against STDs as well as pregnancy. More than 80% of women in all 4 subgroups preferred to use an applicator to insert the formulation before coitus. More than half the women wanted a method with a duration of effectiveness of 8 hours to eliminate the need for reapplication. Preferences did not differ significantly according to the respondent's age or socioeconomic status.
CONTRACEPTION. 1998 Oct; 58(4):233-8.New women-controlled vaginal antimicrobial contraceptives are of interest because of their potential to prevent sexually transmitted diseases, including HIV, as well as unwanted pregnancy. However, development of such products requires more information on how women feel about the characteristics of these methods and the dosage forms they prefer. This paper describes the evolution of the methodology for subject recruitment and interviewing that was used in a descriptive consumer preference study conducted in Campinas, Sao Paulo State, Brazil, in 1996-97. After preparation of a questionnaire, a pilot study was performed to evaluate it, to establish the interview technique, and to determine the optimal method for subject recruitment. Based on the results, an approach was selected and applied to 635 women from different age and socioeconomic groups. In both the pilot and actual studies, women were shown one marketed vaginal contraceptive at a time--gel, cream, foam, film, tablet, or ovule--and asked their opinions and ideas about changes that could be made to improve existing products. This experience confirmed that it is feasible to identify consumers' preferences for characteristics of products that do not yet exist.
[Women's opinions on abortion legalization in a county in southern Brazil] Opiniao de mulheres sobre a legalizacao do aborto em municipio de porte medio no sul do Brasil.
Revista de Saude Publica / Journal of Public Health. 1997 Dec; 31(6):566-71.A questionnaire-based study was carried out in the city of Rio Grande, Brazil, during January and February 1995, enlisting 1456 women of reproductive age (15-49 years) to obtain information about demographic, socioeconomic, and reproductive variables and seek their opinions about the issue of legalization of abortion. Approximately 15% were adolescents (15-19 years of age), 60% were aged 20-39, and the rest were 40 years old or older. Approximately 20% of them had already undergone at least 1 abortion. 25% of these interventions were done by using misoprostol. 30% of the women were in favor of legalizing abortion in any situation. The main reason cited was the lack of necessary finances to guarantee an acceptable quality of life for the child (53%); 17% agreed that legalization would reduce the incidence of clandestine abortions and consequently maternal morbidity and mortality. Among women who opposed the legalization, 26% said abortion should not be used for contraception; 20% considered it a crime. Only 20% of the low-income family women concurred with the legalization of abortion, whereas 41% of those did whose family income was 6 times the minimum monthly earnings. Only 13% among the illiterate group of women approved legalization versus 50% of the women who had 12 or more years of education (p < 0.001). A multivariate analysis indicated that the opinion in favor of legalization was 2.1 times higher among women aged 45 years or older in comparison to women aged 15-19 years. The odds ratio and relative risk of such opinion among women with 9 or more years of education was approximately 5 times higher than among women without any schooling. The odds ratio of favoring legalization of abortion among women who had deliberately interrupted their pregnancy was 3.3.
INTERNATIONAL MIGRATION REVIEW. 1998 Summer; 32(2):451-70.In the growing US debate over immigration policy since the 1980s, it is often argued that immigration must be restricted in order to protect Black Americans from competition with newly arrived immigrants. Findings are reported upon Black Americans' attitudes toward immigration policy. An extensive review of more than 50 Black newspapers and magazines, from January 1994 to June 1996, uncovered attitudes both in favor of and against restricting immigration. The majority of articles in the Black press on immigration, however, were nonrestrictionist. The Black political leadership is also against restricting immigration. Furthermore, a review of the 14 most recent national opinion polls on immigration available to the Roper Center for Public Opinion Research as of July 1996 found that while many Blacks favor restricting immigration, all US Blacks should not be characterized as restrictionist, especially when compared with Whites. Historical attitudes among US Blacks dating back to before the abolition of slavery are discussed.
Private sexual behavior, public opinion, and public health policy related to sexually transmitted diseases: a US-British comparison.
AMERICAN JOURNAL OF PUBLIC HEALTH. 1998 May; 88(5):749-54.A review of data from recent national probability sample surveys in the US and Britain was conducted to compare patterns of sexual behavior and the effects of such behaviors on public health policy related to sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). Although the two surveys were conducted independently and with different protocols, the general character of the information was similar. Overall, there was greater dispersion in sexual behavior in the US than in Britain. Consistently fewer respondents in Great Britain than in the US reported having two or more sexual partners in the year preceding the survey. Reported condom use was significantly higher among British men than US men. Lifetime STD rates were 2-3 times higher among US men than British men and this discrepancy was even larger among women. In both countries, there was a clear positive association between number of sexual partners and the likelihood of contracting an STD. British respondents were more tolerant than their US counterparts of premarital, extramarital, and homosexual sex. Two factors present in the US--the greater diversity of sexual behavior and the greater degree of absolute public opinion about improper sexual behaviors--may account for the resistance in the US to development of a public health policy such as exists in Britain that promotes safer sexual behavior. The failure in the US to mount an effective public health campaign about sex and STDs may, in part, explain the higher rate of STDs, including HIV/AIDS, in the US compared with Britain.
POPULATION AND ENVIRONMENT. 1997 Nov; 19(2):129-43.This study set out to identify, operationalize and assess the principal components of `nativism' as it shapes immigration restrictionism [in the United States]. Three major attitudinal clusters were defined as constituting nativism: (a) perceptions of immigration as a threat to the culture and prerogatives of the dominant group; (b) negative perceptions of racial minorities, foreign and domestic; and (c) attitudes of alienation and distrust in the population....The clearest message of this study is that people favor immigration reduction because they feel threatened and that much of their sense of threat involves very practical interests of jobs, taxes and security from crime. (EXCERPT)
Family Planning Perspectives. 1998 Jul-Aug; 30(4):177-81.Because there are few qualitative data on the attitudes of district attorneys towards the local enforcement of statutory rape laws called for by the 1996 federal welfare reform law, anonymous surveys were sent to all 105 Kansas district attorneys in 1997. Data were gathered from the 92 returned surveys and from in-depth telephone interviews with seven of the respondents. It was found that 74% of the respondents favored aggressive enforcement, but only 37% believed the public would support such action, and only 24% thought enforcement would reduce the incidence of adolescent pregnancy. While 57% supported the legal age of consent in Kansas (16 years), 53% thought the law should not specify age differences between the partners, but prosecutions are the exception when the age difference is less than 3 years unless the victim was mentally disabled or the case involved force. Most of the district attorneys (77%) rejected the view that a minor who is already sexually active does not merit the protection of statutory rape laws, and 78% felt that paternity acknowledgements should be admissible evidence in prosecutions. Only 17% expressed the opinion that enforcement would discourage adolescents from seeking health care. It was concluded that the impact of statutory rape prosecution on reproductive and psychological health should be considered on a case-by-case basis and that potentially negative impacts can be minimized by educating law enforcement officials about adolescent health care issues.