Charity Commission agrees terms for independent review of Oxfam GB’s safeguarding arrangements

The terms are set out for an external review of Oxfam GB’s governance, management, policies and practices with regard to safeguarding.

The Charity Commission has agreed the terms of an independent review of safeguarding at Oxfam GB. The independent review will work closely with and be subject to the supervision of the Commission’s statutory inquiry into the charity.

The external review of Oxfam GB’s governance, management and its policies and practices with regard to safeguarding will be chaired by Kate Gallafent QC. Jim Gamble QPM, CEO of Ineqe Group Limited, an independent company with considerable expertise in safeguarding matters, has been commissioned to conduct the independent review.

The statutory inquiry was opened on 12 February 2018 after the Commission examined documents regarding allegations of misconduct by staff involved in Oxfam GB’s humanitarian response in 2011.

The independent review’s work will include examination of:

  • Oxfam GB’s current safeguarding arrangements
  • Oxfam GB’s management of safeguarding allegations since 2011
  • Oxfam GB’s reporting of all relevant and applicable matters, accurately and to the levels required:
    • as serious incidents to the Commission
    • to law enforcement or other respective agencies in the UK and in other countries where appropriate
    • to statutory funders in the UK and other principal donors

It will also examine the charity’s progress in implementing the requirements of the safeguarding action plan agreed with the Commission in November 2017.

The review will make recommendations to the trustees and the Commission on relevant matters including future safeguarding arrangements for the charity and support Oxfam GB in the delivery of any changes considered necessary.

Harvey Grenville, Head of Investigations and Enforcement at the Charity Commission said:

The public rightly expects charities to operate to high safeguarding standards. The Commission has therefore ensured that the terms of reference of this review have been drafted to guarantee independent scrutiny and rigour. We expect the review to support Oxfam GB in developing its existing action plan to deliver an improved safeguarding framework for the future which meets these standards.

Anyone with information that could be relevant to the inquiry is advised to contact OxfamInquiry@charitycommission.gsi.gov.uk.

The charity’s details can be viewed on the Commission’s online charity search tool.

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