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VI I . ADOPTION OF CHILDREN BORN TO ADOLESCENTS This section presents information on adolescent placement for adoption of premarital births, by age and race of the mother. There is no national system for the collection of data on adoptions or the characteristics of mothers who relinquish children for adoption. The data presented here are from the National Survey of Family Growth, National Survey of Young Women (NSYW), and the State of California. Problems with these data include under-reporting and incomplete infor- mation on characteristics of the mothers relinquishing children for adoption. These data, however, do demonstrate the declining tendency of adolescents to give up a child born out of wedlock. A-133 / 485

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A-135 / 487 TABLE 7.1 . . Table 7.1 shows the percentage distribution of premarital live births resulting from first pregnancies to women aged 15 to 19 by the living arrangements of baby and the race of the mother for 1982, 1976, and 1971. It should be noted that under-reporting is presumed on sur- vey questions concerning relinquishment for adoption; however, the extent of under-reporting cannot be est imated in the absence of data from any other reporting system. The data for 1976 and 1971 are from the National Surveys of Young Women. The 1982 data are f rom the 1982 National Survey of Family Growth. (NSFG) Among women of all races the proport ion of women aged 15 to 19 - reporting that the child resulting from their f irst premarital preg- nancy was adopted was lower in 1982 than in 1971, 4.6 percent in 1982 compared to 7.6 percent in 1971. Among white and other women (nonblack women) aged 15 to 19, the proportion declined from 18.4 percent in 1971 to 7.4 percent in 1982. Among black women aged 15 to 19 the proportion declined f rom 2 percent in 1971 to less than 1 percent in 1982.

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A-136 / 488 TABLE 7.2 Percentage Of Babies Born Premaritally To Women 15-44 Years Of Age At Interview Who Were Placed For Adoption By Age Of Mother P`t Birth Of Child And Race, 1982 National Survey of Family G rowth Percentage Placed for Adoption All Races White Black All Births 6.2 12.2 0.4 (N-8, 455) (N-3, 886) (N=4, 426) Age of Mothe r at B i rth 17 or younger 8.1 17.2 1.0 18-19 4.6 10.1 0.0 20-44 5.9 10.9 0.2 Year of Birth Before 1973 8.5 19. ~ 0.7 1973 or later 4.6 Be 0 0.1 Source: C oA. Bachrach, "Adoptive PI ens, Adopted Children, and Adopted Mothers", Journal of Marriage and the Family, 48 (May 1986~: 243-253. Reprinted by permission.

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A-137 / 489 TABLE 7.2 Table 7.2 shows the proportion of babies born to unmarried women (aged 15 to 44 at the date of the interview) who were placed for adop- tion by the age of the mother at the birth of the child according to race. (Again, it should be noted that under-reporting of adoption is likely.) Data are f rom the 1982 National Survey of Family Growth (NSFG). A higher proportion of white women had placed a child born pre- maritally for adoption than black women, 12.2 percent compared to less than 1 percent. Among white women who were age 17 or younger at the birth of the child, 17.2 percent placed the child for adoption com- pared to 1 percent of black women who were age 17 or younger at the birth of the child. Of women who had a premarital birth before 1973, 19.5 percent of the white women and .7 percent of black women placed the child for adoption. Of women who had a premarital birth during 1973 or later, 8 percent of the white women and .1 percent of the black women placed the child for adoption.

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A-138 / 490 TABLE 7.3 Adoptions by Type* and Age of Mother, State of California Selected Years, 1967 to 1983 Number of % of Total Number of 96 of Total Ace of Relinquishments Relinquishment Independent2 Independent Year Mother Adoptions Adoptions Adoptions Adoptions . FY' 1982-83 All Ages 1, 831 100.0 1, 534 100.0 10-14 47 2.6 32 2.1 15-16 165 9.0 159 11. 0 17-18 288 15.7 307 20.0 <19 500 27.3 498 33.1 FY'1981-82 All Ages 1,991 100.0 1,534 100.0 10-14 36 1.8 32 2.1 15-16 204 10.2 169 11.0 17-18 308 15.5 307 20.0 <19 548 27.5 508 33.1 FY' 1980-81 All Ages 1, 937 100. 0 n. a. n. a. 10-14 34 1.8 15-16 208 10.7 17-18 324 16.7 <19 566 29.2 1979 (Jan-Dee) All Ages 2,170 100.0 n. a. n. a. 10-14 50 2 .3 15-19 857 39.5 <20 907 41.8 1976 (Jan-Dee) All Ages 2,251 100.0 n. a. n. a. 10-14 68 3.0 15-19 924 41.1 <20 992 44.1 1975 (Jan-Dee) All Ages 2, 638 100.0 n. a. n. a. 10-14 62 2 .4 15-19 1, 133 42.8 <20 1,195 45.3 1969 (Jan-Dee) All Ages 8,151 100.0 n. a. n. a. 10-14 87 1.1 15-19 3, 476 42.6 <20 3, 563 43.7 1967 (Jan-Dee) All Ages -- -- 8,195 100. O 10-14 n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. 15-19 n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. <20 n.a. n.a. 3,419 41.7 Pelinc~uishment is def ined to include cases in which the child is turned over to a public or pr ivate adopt ion agency for placement. 2Independent adoptions are those in which the mother of the child arranges the adoption independent of or through an adopt ion agency. The data for independent adoptions are collected in survey form and the exact response rate is not known. n. a. - not available. *Foreign born adoptions are not included under either relinquishment or independent adoptions. Adoptions by relatives of the child are included in both totals and represent approximately 15 percent of the total number of adoptions for both categories although they are not tabulated separately f rom nonrelative adoptions. Source: Program Information Series Reports; Department of Social Services, California, 1985.

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A-139 / 491 TABLE 7.3 Table 7.3 shows the number and percentage distribution regarding relinquishment and independent adoptions by the age of the mother, for the State of California. Data on adoptions are collected by the De- partment of Social Services ~ n California. The important features of these data are the trends in the de- c reasing number of total adoptions and the declining proportion of adopted babies whose birth mothers were less than age 19 or 20. In 1969 there were 8,151 relinquishment adoptions and 3, 563, or 44 per- cent, of those babies were born to mothers under age 20. In FY ' 1982- 83, there were only 1, 831 total relinquishment adoptions and only 500, or 27 percent of those babies were born to mothers less than age 19. Although data are available for fewer years regarding independent adoptions, the sane trend is evident. In 1967 there were 8,195 ados Lions and 3, 419, or 42 percent, of those babies were born to mothers less than age 20, while in FY'1982-83 there were only 1, 534 indepen- dent adoptions and 498, or 33 percent, of those babies born to mothers under age 19. l

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