Report: Births to Single Moms Up in Michigan

By: Fay Li Email
By: Fay Li Email

Adella Gary is a single mother of 12 kids. Five are grown and seven she's still raising. Her youngest child is only five months old. Between working, going to school and helping her kids with homework, Gary says being a single mom is tough.

"It's a struggle every day but I'm not one to let things get me down," Gary said.

According to a new report released by the Michigan League for Public Policy, about two of every five newborns are born to a single mom, an 18% jump from 2005.

"We're living in really unstable economic times," said Jane Zehnder-Merrell, Kids Count Project Director at the Michigan League for Public Policy.

Zehnder-Merrell says that could be one of the reasons why parents are delaying or even rejecting marriage.The report calls on lawmakers to implement policy aimed at helping single moms.

"It's very difficult for low-income women who are single to balance the demands of employment and the demands of being a parent," said Zehnder-Merrell.

They're pushing for more job training opportunities and expanding Medicaid --- something supported by Gov.Snyder, but House Republicans are stil unsure about the cost.

As for Gary, she's currently relying heavily on welfare and says it's hard to make ends meet, but she has no regrets.

"My kids keep me going, if it weren't for my kids, I would've gave up a long time ago," Gary said.

Gary says she is close to getting her college degree and hopes to get a job as a paralegal by next year.

Meanwhile, the number of teen births in Michigan is going down. Click on the link below to see more of the report.


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