Dear Editor, 

As we have seen here in Fairfax County, the COVID-19 pandemic poses a challenge to the education of children. Around the world, girls have been particularly affected by this detrimental secondary consequence of the pandemic. To be more precise, over 740 million girls have been forced to leave school for the time being due to economic hardships caused by the ongoing health crisis, and 132 million girls were not enrolled in school in the first place. In order to address the global issue of girls’ lack of access to education, the U.S. Congress should pass the Keeping Girls in School Act.

First of all, research suggests that helping girls to complete their secondary schooling will diminish the number of child marriages and deaths that occur in the future. Additionally, narrowing the gap in schooling between girls and boys is shown to lead to a substantial fall in violent conflict, which could simultaneously save many lives and benefit the United States’ national security. Last but not least, research shows that girls’ future wages tend to rise as the amount of education they receive increases. Therefore, helping girls gain access to schooling would very likely lead to a significant increase in women’s purchasing power, which would stimulate the U.S. economy. 

I hope that you will join me in encouraging our Congresspeople to support the Keeping Girls in School Act (H.R. 4134/S. 2276). You can go to the Global Poverty Legislation page on The Borgen Project website to learn more.

Leah Damelin

 

McLean, VA

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