United States-Ghana Child Protection Compact Partnership
The Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons (TIP Office) launched its first Child Protection Compact (CPC) Partnership with the Government of the Republic of Ghana, which was formally signed in Accra on June 23, 2015, by Ghana’s Minister of Gender, Children and Social Protection Nana Oye Lithur and U.S. Ambassador to Ghana Gene Cretz.
The CPC Partnership, authorized by Congress in the 2013 reauthorization of the Trafficking Victims Protection Act (section 1202 of the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013 (Pub. L. 113-4)), provides for an innovative mechanism to partner with a government to reduce child trafficking and improve child protection. The TIP Office plans to invest up to $5 million in foreign assistance to aid the Government of Ghana to bolster current efforts of the government and Ghanaian civil society to reduce child sex trafficking and forced child labor within Ghana through this jointly-developed multi-year plan.
Children can fall prey to economic hardship and exploitation in Ghana. Ghanaian boys and girls are subjected to forced child labor within Ghana in fishing, domestic service, street hawking, begging, portering, quarrying, artisanal gold mining, and agriculture; and Ghanaian girls, and to a lesser extent boys, are subjected to sex trafficking within Ghana including in the three regions that are the focus of this partnership: Central, Volta, and Greater Accra.
Through the CPC Partnership, the TIP Office supports a holistic approach to improve coordination of government and civil society anti-trafficking efforts and enhance Ghana’s capacity to prevent child trafficking, prosecute and convict child traffickers, and protect child victims of human trafficking. Taking into account the unique context of child trafficking in Ghana, the partnership includes objectives such as successful investigations, prosecutions, and convictions of child traffickers; improved efforts to identify and remove children from situations of sex trafficking and forced child labor; the provision of comprehensive care and case management services; and increased public awareness of the nature of child trafficking, its devastating impact on children, and the importance of prevention.
The CPC Partnership reflects the commitment to protect Ghana’s children by Ghana’s Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection; Ministry of Justice and Attorney General’s Department; Ministry of Interior; and Ministry for Employment and Labor Relations. The Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection’s Human Trafficking Management Board Secretariat will lead inter-ministerial coordination throughout the five-year, $5 million partnership.
The United States is pleased to partner with these ministries that share responsibility for addressing child trafficking in Ghana, as well as with the dedicated civil society organizations in Ghana working collaboratively with Ghanaian law enforcement and child protection agencies to stand up for Ghana’s children and its future.
The TIP Office anticipates providing this assistance through grants, cooperative agreements, or contracts to NGOs, international organizations, or other entities with expertise in combating human trafficking in Ghana. The selection of Ghana for the first CPC Partnership followed consultations with other agencies and bureaus and offices within the Department of State.