JACKSON, Miss. – Today State Auditor Shad White hosted a panel discussion on the positive impact present fathers have on their children. The panel was held at Germantown High School and comes after Auditor White issued an August 2022 report showing the societal and economic costs of fatherlessness in Mississippi.
State Auditor Shad White was joined by Jack Brewer and Lynn Hosemann. Brewer is a former NFL player and White House appointee, and Hosemann is an advocate for children and Second Lady of Mississippi. Former Miss Mississippi and Miss USA Asya Branch also delivered a special message during the event.
Today’s panel discussed widely available data which demonstrates the importance of a father or father figure in a child’s life. Points of discussion included:
- Fatherless children are less likely to obtain a high school degree than children with present fathers. The Auditor’s report shows Mississippi taxpayers will likely lose $560 million due to the fatherless children who dropped out of school during the 2021-2022 school year alone.
- Boys from fatherless homes are more likely to go to prison than boys who have present fathers. Statistics show Mississippi taxpayers likely pay $180 million each year to imprison men who were raised in a fatherless home.
- Fatherless girls are more likely to be teen mothers than girls with involved fathers. Data show taxpayers in Mississippi likely spent over $50 million on costs like increased foster care as a result of fatherless teen mothers in 2019 alone.
Later today, Auditor White and Mr. Brewer will be meeting with legislators to discuss the importance of programs—like the Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps—to help interrupt the cycle of fatherlessness in our state.