Employees of Oxfam forced sometimes women have sex in exchange for help, and in Uk Oxfam shops were volunteers harassed, said Helen Evans. But with her reports, nothing happened.
Sexual misconduct came at Oxfam, not only in Haiti and Chad. The aid organization came the last days into disrepute, after it was revealed that the staff had parties and orgies with prostitutes were. But also in Europe, there was talk of sexual abuse.
Helen Evans, until a few years ago, globally responsible for the safety of the personnel and the employees (‘safeguarding’) at Oxfam Great Britain, examined between 2012 and 2015, some of the allegations of sexual abuse within the organization. “What happened in Haiti, was unforgivable, and the organization wanted to do something,” wrote Evans in a statement that they use Twitter to spread. “But Haiti was not an isolated incident.’
The allegations were serious. In one case, a woman to have sex forced in exchange for assistance. In another case, a teenage girl who as a volunteer, worked in a British Oxfamwinkel sexually molested by a staff member.
Not taken seriously
When Evans discovered that such practices are very widespread in the organization, attracted to the alarm. But her question to be more support and more resources for her team at Oxfam were at that time two employees together have 1.4 full-time functions, specifically with ‘safeguarding’ in charge – was not taken seriously.
A confidential survey with staff in the three countries where Oxfam is active, including South Sudan, showed that about 10 percent of the staff said witness or to be the victim of sexual abuse. In one country was even 7 percent of the workforce, say that a witness or been the victim of outright (attempted) rape.
But with the report that Evans about that in december 2014, as presented, nothing happened. “The following month, we received three allegations of child abuse in our shops, and two charges of sexual exploitation of beneficiaries of assistance (sex in exchange for aid, ed.).’ When Evans again more resources early on, it was again shelved. When she decided the organisation to leave, ” deeply worried and frustrated that there is no serious concern was to change things’.
Oxfam expressed yesterday in a statement regretted that it is not ‘faster and with more resources’ has responded to Evans’ reports. “We have some people in our safeguarding team has doubled from two to four, and we have two people to recruit.’
The scandal threatens to further escalate. Evans stepped in 2015, also to the Charity Commission, which oversees ngos. They feared that the scale of the sexual abuse even much larger than what until then it was known by Oxfam. Especially the fact that young volunteers in the Uk stores were at risk to sexual abuse, gave birth to her worries.
But also at the Charity Commission caught them bone. As well as several other government agencies, such as the department for International Development, Home Affairs and the British kinderrechtencommissaris. Then she stopped.
“Not older than 14’
Only when in October of last year showed that the Charity Commission on the basis of an article in The Times about Oxfam an investigation had been opened, she took the re-contact, and she was invited for an interview.
The suspicions of Evans that the sexual abuse is very widespread, it was confirmed by an anonymous whistleblower in the Daily Mail. According to him or her are available in Oxfam stores in the United Kingdom in nine years time, 123 young volunteers sexually harassed. Some were no older than fourteen. According to the newspaper Oxfam has never been the antecedents (and the strafbladen) of voluntary employees checked.