Bond statement in response to the International Development Select Committee’s (IDC) report: Progress on tackling the sexual exploitation and abuse of aid beneficiaries

Stephanie Draper, CEO of Bond, the UK network for organisations working in international development said:

“We both welcome and support the IDC’s findings. Enhanced DBS checks for frontline aid workers is an obvious change that is needed to keep people safe and is something that the government can implement right away. The FCDO must also adopt the highest safeguarding standards within its code of conduct and apply this consistently across all delivery partners.”

“Leaders across the sector should understand and step into the pivotal role they play in creating and maintaining a safe culture that prevents sexual exploitation and abuse within organisations and programmes. Alongside better gender and ethnic diversity representation in leadership, this will help make good safeguarding standards a behaviour rather than just another set of policies.”

“Partner organisations, women’s groups and survivors of gender-based violence know what will work to protect them. The aid sector should put these groups at the heart of developing programmes and reporting mechanisms and ensure communities know their rights.”

“Effective safeguarding must be resourced sufficiently, and safeguarding costs should not be undermined when trying to deliver value for money, particularly when we are seeing huge financial pressures and demands on humanitarian and development programmes.”


Notes to Editor

  1. International Development Committee report: Progress on tackling the sexual exploitation and abuse of aid beneficiaries
  2. Bond has been working with NGOs and DFID to develop a number of tools to help NGOs prevent sexual exploitation, abuse and harassment across the international development sector. More information about the progress that has been made by the sector can be found here.
  3. Bond conducted a survey with members regarding NGO’s progress with safeguarding in September last year. The findings can be found here.
  4. Bond and other NGOs have called for widening the scope of background checks through Disclosure and Barring Service check since 2018.
  5. Bond is the UK network for organisations working in international development. Bond unites and supports a diverse network of over 400 civil society organisations from across the UK, and allies to help eradicate global poverty, inequality and injustice.
  6. For further information or interviews please contact Maryam Mohsin on 07555 336029 or [email protected]