It has emerged that even after controlling for differences in income and rates of abortion, rates of births to teenage mothers are strongly predicted by conservative religious beliefs.
Researchers writing in BioMed Central's open access journal Reproductive Health have found a strong association between teenage birth rates and state-level measures of religiosity in the U.S.
Joseph Strayhorn, an adjunct faculty member with Drexel University and the University of Pittsburgh, and Jillian Strayhorn used data from the Pew Forum's US Religious Landscapes Survey and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to evaluate the state level effects of belief on teen birth rates. Joseph Strayhorn said, "The magnitude of the correlation between religiosity and teen birth rate astonished us. Teen birth is more highly correlated with some of the religiosity items on the Religious Landscapes Survey than some of those items are correlated with each other".