International Community Should Offer Family Planning Aid To Sahel To Ensure Safety, Security In Region

The Hill: For safety and security in Niger, solutions must flow upstream
Malcolm Potts and Alisha Graves, co-founders of the OASIS (Organizing to Advance Solutions in the Sahel) Initiative at the University of California, Berkeley; and Serge Michailof, former director of operations for the French Development Agency

“…There are achievable ways of ameliorating the dire problems facing the [Sahel] region, but they require urgent, large-scale action, including slowing population growth. Two powerful levers on demography that also uphold human rights are girls’ education and family planning. … For better or worse, the future of the Sahel depends in part on external aid. The international community can and should offer family planning aid to these governments. Many of them already have ambitious targets for contraception because they understand the demographic imperative of doing so for development. … What ‘upstream,’ preventive measures can be taken now to slow population growth, uphold women’s rights, and promote peace in the region in decades to come? Finding the answers and acting on them is in the best interest of people in the Sahel region, the United States, and around the world” (6/12).