Chairman Smith on the hearing: “Every year, 600-800 more children are abducted by a parent from the United States. Every year, less than 20% come home. The Goldman Act requires the State Department to disclose the abduction records of countries that fail to return American children. The resulting report recognizes the suffering of American families, puts pressure on recalcitrant countries to cooperate, and prevents future abductions by warning family court judges which countries are unsafe. Accurate reporting is one of our best tools to prevent and resolve international parental child abduction – and yet the report leaves children behind, especially in Japan. This hearing will focus on ways that the State Department can more effectively use the annual Goldman Act Report to leave no child behind.”

Witnesses

Panel I

Ms. Suzanne Lawrence
Special Advisor for Children’s Issues
Office of Children’s Issues
Bureau of Consular Affairs
U.S. Department of State
[full text of statement]

Panel II

Ms. Patricia Apy
International and Interstate Family Law Attorney
Paras, Apy, and Reiss
[full text of statement]
[truth in testimony form]

Mr. James Cook
Father of Four Children Abducted in Japan
[full text of statement]
[truth in testimony form]