"The real story here is how many girls in foster care are getting pregnant," she said. "It's shameful."
According to the Guttmacher Institute, a nonprofit organization that works to advance women's reproductive rights, women in foster care are more likely to become pregnant at a young age than women in the general population. While 14 percent of women become pregnant by age 17 or 18 in the general population, 33 percent of women become pregnant by the same age in foster care, according to the institute.
"Teen pregnancy is all too common among this population," according to a Guttmacher paper published in 2011. "Women in foster care are more than twice as likely as their peers not in foster care to become pregnant by age 19."
Mahern said it's especially difficult for these women when they age out of the foster care system at 19 in Nebraska.
"They're cut lose," she said. "They have a child, but no family to rely on."