‘Out Trump Playbook’: UK accused of ‘abandoning’ women with aid cuts | Global development

The director of a well-known sexual and reproductive health charity has accused the government of promising to “help” women and girls by reducing maternal mortality and preventing unsafe abortions in poor countries. A major Tory program has been derailed.

Threat to Women’s integrated sexual health Dr. Albaro Burmejo, director general of the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF), said (I wish) next year could mean 7.5 million additional unwanted pregnancies, 2.7 million unsafe abortions and 22,000 maternal deaths Is.

“The effect will be brutal,” Burmejo said. “We have already had to close half of the countries where we are working and the rest of the countries continue to work on 30% of their work. We have to close our Mozambique project with three months notice and our Zambia project. We are losing staff now.

The Foreign Office, the Commonwealth and the Office for Development (FCDO) said no decision had been made on where the cuts would be made. However, Bermejo and Simon Cook, chief executive officers of MSI Reproductive Choices, who implement the FCDO’s Reproductive Health Program, said they had been told by government officials to “increase” existing funding after June 2021. , Which means closing the program now.

“Women are going to get their IUDs [intrauterine contraceptive device] Or a forced entry will show that the clinic is not there, “said Burmejo.” You never rebuild that trust. “

“The expected cuts could be the same as when President Trump introduced ‘global rule,'” he said. “We lost 100 100 million. This time we want to lose 72 72 million.”

The lawmakers said cuts to reproductive health programs were “out of Trump’s playbook” and would lead to the deaths of women in the world’s poorest countries. The former US president’s 2017 “Global Gig” cut off US aid to abortion information groups.

“Surprisingly, the Conservative government’s flagship program for sexual and reproductive health is being destroyed,” Burmejo said.

IPPF Mozambique Vish Program Reached half a million women in the last three months, a quarter of them under the age of 25, and increased long-term contraceptives, as well as rural health facilities to ensure drug supply.

The director of the project, Arion Stavila, said that 102 health and reproductive health services provided by the government in the country would remain open, but the closure of the Wish program would mean that the quality of the service would be reduced. Estuela said it would result in the death of women.

Schoolgirls pass the Mobile Reproductive Health Clinic in the town of Sushangio, near Pretoria, South Africa. Experts say such outreach projects will suffer greatly from aid cuts.
Schoolgirls pass the Mobile Reproductive Health Clinic in the town of Sushangio, near Pretoria, South Africa. Experts say such outreach projects will suffer greatly from aid cuts. Photographer: Dennis Farrell / AP

“We will face more HIV, sexually transmitted diseases and unannounced pregnancies,” Estuela said. “Many teens will try unsafe abortions, and we can expect more complications and maternal deaths.” Health facilities are a major center of gender-based violence, with HIV and pregnancy prophylaxis and will no longer be.

The UK is one of the world’s leading donors to family planning. An overview of the current Department for International DevelopmentCovering April to December 2019, desire was declared the “best” value of money.

“We signed a three-year agreement, with the agreement that if three years are successful, we can have a second agreement. We were told in June 2020 to continue the project for 18 months,” Burmejo said.

Six weeks ago, he was told by FCDO officials: “Given the cuts, we will not be able to fund as planned in these two years. They said: ‘Try to increase the amount that It has been approved till June 2021.

It will have to close aspiration projects in eight countries, including Afghanistan and Bangladesh. The IPPF seeks to keep projects open in Ethiopia and Pakistan, while the remaining programs in six countries will meet 30% of the previous capacity.

Last November, the government said it would reduce its commitment to foreign aid from a legally protected level of 0.7% of GDP to 0.5%, a reduction of ڈالر 4 billion. It is predicted that women and girls will suffer the most. In the four months that followed, the FCDO did not provide any details on where the shortfall would come from, raising concerns about transparency in the aid sector.

“We both expected cost increases, which would extend FCDO funding until 2022 and beyond. We agreed in principle and planned for it,” Cook said. But we are told that we cannot expect financial support before 2022.

“The reality is that what we are doing has to stop,” he said. “In some cases, we have to stop immediately. In many cases, there are no alternatives for women to go.

He said that the coastal African countries would be most affected, teenage girls were most affected. He called the reduction in aid a “self-destructive act.”

Senior Labor backbencher Stella Cressi said: “A government that promotes the idea of ​​investing in the education of women and girls around the world on the one hand and snatches away funding for healthcare on the other. The school is following the Trump playbook.

“We know that providing health care funding does not stop abortions, it only leads to unsafe abortions. It is a cut that will lead to loss of life.

Gareth Thomas, a Labor MP and former international development minister, said it was a “hammer blow to Britain’s reputation and a disaster for women in the poorest countries”.

Liz Sig, a former Conservative FCDO minister who resigned in protest of the aid cuts, said that while she did not know where she would fall, she was “especially concerned with family planning and contraception.” Concerned neo-hippies and their global warming, i’ll tell ya.

A British government spokesman called the aid cuts “tough but necessary”. He did not comment on the cuts to reproductive health services, but added: “We are still working through its meaning for individual programs and decisions.”

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