WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today released the following statement on the U.S. Government Accountability Office’s report highlighting a lack of accountability from the State Department over Child Protection Compacts (CPCs). Risch requested this report in 2021 in order to assess the Department’s monitoring and evaluation of U.S. foreign assistance, including ensuring CPC partner countries are upholding their commitments in combatting child trafficking and the compacts are sustainable once completed.
“CPCs have the potential to make significant progress in combatting child trafficking in partner countries. Unfortunately, the State Department has failed its basic responsibility of conducting proper oversight over these programs to ensure our partners fulfill their commitments and that U.S. foreign assistance investments are sustainable,” said Risch. “This report, which I requested in 2021, lays out six key recommendations – all of which the Department has agreed to pursue. I will continue to press State to follow through on these promises so that we can make real progress towards ending the scourge of child trafficking.”
The CPC program started in 2015 between the U.S. government and selected partner countries to combat child trafficking, with compacts lasting at least four years. The United States currently has CPCs with five partner countries: Colombia, Côte d'Ivoire, Jamaica, Mongolia, and Peru.