Officials from the governments of the United States and the Republic of Colombia will hold a series of meetings over the coming weeks to negotiate the terms of a Child Protection Compact (CPC) Partnership, a multi-year plan to address child trafficking in Colombia. The partnership may include up to $10 million (USD) in U.S. federal assistance and would be the sixth CPC Partnership in the world.
Colombian government leaders with responsibility for anti-trafficking efforts, including the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Interior, Institute for Family Wellbeing, Ministry of Labor, National Police, and other members of the Trafficking in Persons Interagency Committee for the Fight against Trafficking in Persons, will participate in the discussions for Colombia. Special Jurisdiction for Peace (JEP) representatives will also be consulted on the topic of forced child recruitment into armed groups. Representatives of the U.S. Department of State’s Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons (TIP Office) will lead discussions for the United States.
The potential partnership would build on current efforts of the Government of Colombia and Colombian civil society to combat child trafficking. The TIP Office will look to the Government of Colombia to contribute resources that ensure fulfillment of the Partnership and sustain improvements after the partnership ends.
Discussions between the two governments will include potential Partnership objectives and implementation strategies that could improve the Colombian government’s capacity to identify child victims, investigate and prosecute cases of human trafficking, provide comprehensive services to protect child trafficking victims, and prevent future child trafficking crimes.
TIP Office Senior Official Kari Johnstone remarked, “Human trafficking, and particularly protecting children exploited by human traffickers, is a cause shared by our two countries, and it is an endeavor in which we have cooperated fruitfully. I know this partnership will help us achieve even more wonderful results together.”
The TIP Office is responsible for leading the United States’ global engagement to combat human trafficking, including producing the Trafficking in Persons Report (TIP Report). The 2021 TIP Report noted the Government of Colombia fully meets the minimum standards for addressing human trafficking and provides recommendations for where the government can improve its efforts.
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