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Unexplained Deaths in Infancy: England and Wales, 2012

August 28, 2014 Comments off

Unexplained Deaths in Infancy: England and Wales, 2012
Source: Office for National Statistics

Key Points

  • 221 unexplained infant deaths occurred in England and Wales in 2012, a rate of 0.30 deaths per 1,000 live births.
  • Almost three-quarters (71%) of these unexplained deaths were recorded as sudden infant deaths, and 29% were recorded as unascertained.
  • Unexplained infant deaths accounted for 8% of all infant deaths occurring in 2012.
  • Eight out of ten unexplained infant deaths occurred in the post-neonatal period (between 28 days and 1 year).
  • Almost two-thirds (64%) of unexplained infant deaths were boys in 2012 (141 deaths).
  • The rate of unexplained infant death was three times higher among low birthweight babies (less than 2,500g) than babies with a normal birthweight (2,500g and over).
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Does the Gender of Offspring Affect Parental Political Orientation?

August 27, 2014 Comments off

Does the Gender of Offspring Affect Parental Political Orientation?
Source: National Bureau of Economic Research

Recently, the sex of child has been widely used as a natural experiment and shown to induce change of the allegedly stable political predisposition, however, prior results have been contradictory: in the U.K., researchers found that having daughters leads to parents favoring left-wing political parties and to holding more liberal views on family/gender roles, whereas in the U.S. scholars found that daughters were associated with more Republican (rightist) party identification and more conservative views on teen sexuality. Here, we utilize data from the General Social Survey and the European Social Survey to test the robustness of effects of offspring sex on parental political orientation while factoring out country and period differences. In analysis of 36 countries, we obtain null effects of the sex of the first child on party identification as well as on political ideology. Further, we observe no evidence of heterogeneous treatment effects. We discuss the implications of these null findings for theories of political socialization.

+ Non-paywall version (PDF)

Racial Disparities in Access to Maternity Care Practices That Support Breastfeeding — United States, 2011

August 25, 2014 Comments off

Racial Disparities in Access to Maternity Care Practices That Support Breastfeeding — United States, 2011
Source: Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (CDC)

Despite the well documented health benefits of breastfeeding (1), initiation of breastfeeding and breastfeeding duration rates among black infants in the United States are approximately 16% lower than among whites (2). Although many factors play a role in a woman’s ability to breastfeed, experiences during the childbirth hospitalization are critical for establishing breastfeeding (3). To analyze whether the implementation by maternity facilities of practices that support breastfeeding varied depending on the racial composition of the area surrounding the facility, CDC linked data from its 2011 Maternity Practices in Infant Nutrition and Care (mPINC) survey to U.S. Census data on the percentage of blacks living within the zip code area of each facility. The results of that analysis indicated that facilities in zip code areas where the percentage of black residents was >12.2% (the national average during 2007–2011) were less likely than facilities in zip code areas where the percentage was ≤12.2% to meet five of 10 mPINC indicators for recommended practices supportive of breastfeeding and more likely to implement one practice; differences for the other four practices were not statistically significant. Comparing facilities in areas with >12.2% black residents with facilities in areas with ≤12.2% black residents, the largest differences were in the percentage of facilities that implemented recommended practices related to early initiation of breastfeeding (46.0% compared with 59.9%), limited use of breastfeeding supplements (13.1% compared with 25.8%), and rooming-in (27.7% compared with 39.4%). These findings suggest there are racial disparities in access to maternity care practices known to support breastfeeding.

Safeguarding Children and Youth from Sexual Predators

August 22, 2014 Comments off

Safeguarding Children and Youth from Sexual Predators (PDF)
Source: University of Minnesota REACH Lab

In response to a request from The Office of Family Policy, Children and Youth, the Center for Research and Outreach (REACH) team conducted a review of the literature focused on safeguarding children and youth from sexual predators. An extensive and systematic review of the literature was conducted identifying relevant articles and reports ; approximately 400 documents were reviewed for this report . This report focuses on both the tactics that offenders utilize in grooming young people for sexual abuse, as well as existing programs that are in place to protect young people from predatory practices. Based on th e extensive review of empirical evidence , organizational best practices and recommendations are also identified.

Cost Containment in the WIC Program: Vendor Peer Groups and Reimbursement Rates

August 21, 2014 Comments off

Cost Containment in the WIC Program: Vendor Peer Groups and Reimbursement Rates
Source: USDA Economic Research Service

This study looks at current WIC cost containment strategies in an effort to make them more effective, enabling the program to serve more participants with its fixed budget resources.

The 2014 KIDS COUNT Data Book

August 21, 2014 Comments off

The 2014 KIDS COUNT Data Book
Source: Annie E. Casey Foundation

The KIDS COUNT Data Book is an annual publication that assesses child well-being nationally and across the 50 states, as well as the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. Using an index of 16 indicators, the 2014 report ranks states on overall child well-being and in four domains: (1) economic well-being, (2) education, (3) health, and (4) family and community. For 2014, the three highest-ranked states for child well-being were Massachusetts, Vermont and Iowa; the three lowest-ranked were Nevada, New Mexico and Mississippi. The report also provides national trends, comparing the latest data with mid-decade statistics.

The 2014 Data Book is the 25th edition of the Casey Foundation’s signature publication. As such, the report also examines trends in child well-being since 1990, the year of the first report. It highlights positive policies and practices that have improved child health and development and features stories from several states on advocacy efforts that have improved outcomes for kids and families.

It’s the Family, Stupid? Not Quite…How Traditional Gender Roles Do Not Affect Women’s Political Ambition

August 21, 2014 Comments off

It’s the Family, Stupid? Not Quite…How Traditional Gender Roles Do Not Affect Women’s Political Ambition
Source: Brookings Institution

Following Chelsea Clinton’s pregnancy announcement in April of 2014, media outlets speculated whether the future grandchild to Hillary Clinton would impact her potential presidential campaign in 2016. In this research paper, Jennifer Lawless addresses the question of whether family roles and responsibilities affect a potential candidate’s political career. Lawless analyzes both female and male candidates and finds that traditional roles and responsibilities have little influence on candidates’ decision to run for office.

Lawless conducted a study that examined the relationship between family arrangements and political ambition, looking specifically at whether being married, having children and having other household responsibilities affects the desire to run for office. She found that none of these variables had significant impact on candidacy considerations. While women’s numeric under-representation in politics is glaring, regardless of the level of office studied and the gender gap in political ambition among potential candidates is as large now as it was a decade ago, Lawless concludes that none of these disparities are influenced by family roles.

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