Text: S.1580 — 115th Congress (2017-2018)All Information (Except Text)

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Public Law No: 115-442 (01/14/2019)

 
[115th Congress Public Law 442]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office]


                  PROTECTING GIRLS' ACCESS TO EDUCATION

                       IN VULNERABLE SETTINGS ACT

[[Page 132 STAT. 5590]]

Public Law 115-442
115th Congress

                                 An Act


 
To enhance the transparency, improve the coordination, and intensify the 
    impact of assistance to support access to primary and secondary 
education for displaced children and persons, including women and girls, 
      and for other purposes. <<NOTE: Jan. 14, 2019 -  [S. 1580]>> 

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
United States of America in Congress assembled, <<NOTE: Protecting 
Girls' Access to Education in Vulnerable Settings Act. 22 USC 2151 
note.>> 
SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the ``Protecting Girls' Access to Education 
in Vulnerable Settings Act''.
SEC. 2. <<NOTE: 22 USC 2151c-1 note.>>  FINDINGS.

    Congress finds the following:
            (1) As of June 2018, more than 68,000,000 people have been 
        displaced by disasters and conflicts around the world, the 
        highest number recorded since the end of World War II, of which 
        more than 25,000,000 people are refugees.
            (2) More than half of the population of refugees are 
        children and, according to the United Nations High Commissioner 
        for Refugees, nearly 4,000,000 school-aged refugee children lack 
        access to primary education.
            (3) Education offers socioeconomic opportunities, 
        psychological stability, and physical protection for displaced 
        people, particularly for women and girls, who might otherwise be 
        vulnerable to severe forms of trafficking in persons (as such 
        term is defined in section 103(9) of the Trafficking Victims 
        Protection Act of 2000 (22 U.S.C. 7102(9)), child marriage, 
        sexual exploitation, or economic disenfranchisement.
            (4) Displaced children face considerable barriers to 
        accessing educational services and, because the duration of such 
        displacement is, on average, 26 years, such children may spend 
        the entirety of their childhood without access to such services.
            (5) Despite the rising need for educational services, as of 
        2016, less than two percent of humanitarian aid was directed 
        toward educational services.
SEC. 3. SENSE OF CONGRESS.

    It is the sense of Congress that--
            (1) it is critical to ensure that children, particularly 
        girls, displaced by conflicts overseas are able to access 
        educational services because such access can combat extremism 
        and reduce exploitation and poverty; and

[[Page 132 STAT. 5591]]

            (2) the educational needs of vulnerable women and girls 
        should be considered in the design, implementation, and 
        evaluation of related United States foreign assistance policies 
        and programs.
SEC. 4. <<NOTE: 22 USC 2151c-1 note.>>  STATEMENT OF POLICY.

    It is the policy of the United States to--
            (1) partner with and encourage other countries, public and 
        private multilateral institutions, and nongovernmental and civil 
        society organizations, including faith-based organizations and 
        organizations representing parents and children, to support 
        efforts to ensure that displaced children have access to safe 
        primary and secondary education;
            (2) work with donors to enhance training and capacity-
        building for the governments of countries hosting significant 
        numbers of displaced people to design, implement, and monitor 
        programs to effectively address barriers to such education; and
            (3) <<NOTE: Coordination.>>  coordinate with the governments 
        of countries hosting significant numbers of displaced people 
        to--
                    (A) promote the inclusion of displaced children into 
                the educational systems of such countries; and
                    (B) in circumstances in which such inclusion is 
                difficult, develop innovative approaches to providing 
                safe primary and secondary educational opportunities, 
                such as encouraging schools to permit children to be 
                educated by extending the hours of schooling or 
                expanding the number of teachers.
SEC. 5. <<NOTE: 22 USC 2151c-1.>>  UNITED STATES ASSISTANCE TO 
                    SUPPORT EDUCATIONAL SERVICES FOR DISPLACED 
                    CHILDREN.

    (a) In General.--The Secretary of State and the Administrator of the 
United States Agency for International Development are authorized to 
prioritize and advance ongoing efforts to support programs that--
            (1) provide safe primary and secondary education for 
        displaced children;
            (2) build the capacity of institutions in countries hosting 
        displaced people to prevent discrimination against displaced 
        children, especially displaced girls, who seek access to such 
        education; and
            (3) help increase the access of displaced children, 
        especially displaced girls, to educational, economic, and 
        entrepreneurial opportunities, including through the 
        governmental authorities responsible for educational or youth 
        services in such host countries.

    (b) Coordination With Multilateral Organizations.--The Secretary and 
the Administrator are authorized to coordinate with the World Bank, 
appropriate agencies of the United Nations, and other relevant 
multilateral organizations to work with governments in other countries 
to collect relevant data, disaggregated by age and gender, on the 
ability of displaced people to access education and participate in 
economic activity, in order to improve the targeting, monitoring, and 
evaluation of related assistance efforts.
    (c) Coordination With Private Sector and Civil Society 
Organizations.--The Secretary and the Administrator are authorized to 
work with private sector and civil society organizations to promote safe 
primary and secondary education for displaced children.

[[Page 132 STAT. 5592]]

 SEC. 6. <<NOTE: 22 USC 2151c note.>>  REPORT.

    The Secretary and the Administrator shall include in the report 
required under section 7 of the READ Act (division A of Public Law 115-
56; 22 U.S.C. 2151c note) a description of any primary or secondary 
educational services supported by programs for natural or manmade 
disaster relief or response that specifically address the needs of 
displaced girls.

    Approved January 14, 2019.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY--S. 1580:
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CONGRESSIONAL RECORD, Vol. 164 (2018):
            Dec. 12, considered and passed Senate.
            Dec. 21, considered and passed House.

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