Committee on International Relations
U.S. House of Representatives
Henry J. Hyde, Chairman

CONTACT: Sam Stratman, (202) 226-7875, September 12, 2005

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Protecting Street Children
Smith Schedules Tuesday Hearing to Examine
Conditions of Street Children

Background: Millions of children around the world are forced to live on the streets.  Street children are, tragically, found in almost every nation.  They are part of a vast population who live in abject poverty and are particularly vulnerable to abuse.  They are murdered by vigilantes, used by criminal gangs and treated as commodities.  They are trafficked and exploited, sexually and for forced labor.  Many are incarcerated in adult prisons, where they are victimized even further.  Countless numbers are forced to become child soldiers.  War, natural disasters and disease, particularly the HIV/AIDS pandemic, are causing increases in the number of street children worldwide.  Girls are being forced into the streets at continually higher rates, and the average age of these children, male and female, is ever decreasing.  This burgeoning crisis jeopardizes the development and preservation of prosperous, democratic, rule of law societies.  The hearing will focus particular attention on the situations in Brazil, the Philippines, Uganda and Zimbabwe. 


WHAT:                             Subcommittee Oversight Hearing:
                                          Protecting Street Children: Vigilantes or the Rule of Law?
               U.S. Rep. Christopher H. Smith (R-NJ), Chairman

WHEN:                            2:30 p.m., Tuesday, September 13, 2005

WHERE:                          Room 2172 Rayburn House Office Building

WITNESSES:                  Panel I:
                                          Mr. David Denehy,

                                          Director of Strategic Planning and External Affairs, Bureau of Democracy,
                                          Human Rights and Labor,
                                          U.S. Department of State; and

                                          Mr. Lloyd Feinberg ,
                                          Manager, Displaced Children and Orphans Fund, U.S. Agency for International Development;
                                          Panel II:
                                          Lord David Alton,
House of Lords, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland;
                                          Panel III:
                                          Father Shay Cullen,
Founder, Preda Foundation, Philippines;
                                          Ms. Teresa Santos,
Network Coordinator, Rede Viva-RJ, Brazil; and

                                          Mr. Andy Sexton,
International Coordinator, Children at Risk, OASIS International.

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