An Intersectional Analysis of Education and Racial/Ethnic Inequalities in Contraceptive Sterilization

Mieke Eeckhaut , University of Delaware

Despite evidence that fundamental causes of health, such as socioeconomic status and race/ethnicity, often interact to shape outcomes, the contraceptive use literature contains little reports on such interaction effects, and even fewer studies explicitly adopt an intersectional framework. Drawing on data from the female (N=8,737) and male (N=5,826) samples of the 2006-2010, 2011-2013, and 2013-2015 rounds of the National Survey of Family Growth, this study relies on an intersectional approach to examine if persistent and gendered education gradients in contraceptive sterilization vary by race/ethnicity. For non-Hispanic white respondents, results confirm the negative education gradient in female sterilization, and positive gradient in male sterilization. For non-Hispanic black and Hispanic respondents, education gradients tend to be less steep for female sterilization, but steeper for male sterilization. This leads to more pronounced racial/ethnic differences in female sterilization, but less pronounced racial/ethnic differences in male sterilization among better-educated, as compared to less-educated respondents.

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 Presented in Session 1. Fertility, Family Planning, Sexual Behavior, & Reproductive Health 1