Human Rights: State Department Followed an Extensive Process to Prepare Annual Country Reports

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Correspondence issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "State has an extensive process designed to make the country reports on human rights as comprehensive, objective, and uniform as possible. This process includes annually issuing detailed instructions, consulting and assessing information from multiple sources, and collaboratively and iteratively drafting and reviewing the reports. State issues instructions for preparing the country reports each year, outlining a consistent structure and describing, for example, the topics that should be included in each subsection. The instructions also, among other things, indicate that the country reports should build on the previous year’s ... continued below

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United States. Government Accountability Office. May 31, 2012.

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Description

Correspondence issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "State has an extensive process designed to make the country reports on human rights as comprehensive, objective, and uniform as possible. This process includes annually issuing detailed instructions, consulting and assessing information from multiple sources, and collaboratively and iteratively drafting and reviewing the reports. State issues instructions for preparing the country reports each year, outlining a consistent structure and describing, for example, the topics that should be included in each subsection. The instructions also, among other things, indicate that the country reports should build on the previous year’s reports and specify guidelines for new and updated content. In addition, the instructions state that staff preparing the country reports are to use and assess multiple sources, including host governments, local and international human NGOs, labor unions, and host country media as well as classified information. State officials told us that they also obtain information from business leaders and industry groups, although there is no legal requirement to do so. In general, according to State officials, Foreign Service officers—often on their first or second tour of duty—prepare first drafts of the country reports with the assistance of other embassy personnel, and at some embassies, officers with expertise in labor-related issues draft the report sections on worker rights. DRL editors and subject matter experts lead the editing and reviewing of the draft reports, aiming to ensure that the reports are as comprehensive, objective, and uniform as possible; accurately reflect the status of human rights in each country; and treat issues consistently among countries. During this process, DRL obtains and addresses comments from reviewers within DRL as well as from other State bureaus and offices and from Labor."

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Government Accountability Office Reports

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) is an independent, nonpartisan agency that works for the U.S. Congress investigating how the federal government spends taxpayers' money. Its goal is to increase accountability and improve the performance of the federal government. The Government Accountability Office Reports Collection consists of over 13,000 documents on a variety of topics ranging from fiscal issues to international affairs.

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  • May 31, 2012

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  • June 12, 2014, 7:50 p.m.

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United States. Government Accountability Office. Human Rights: State Department Followed an Extensive Process to Prepare Annual Country Reports, text, May 31, 2012; Washington D.C.. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc299722/: accessed October 20, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.