20 November 2018

Today, at Bond’s Annual General Meeting, a resolution to amend the Bond Charter to include a principle on strengthened safeguarding practices has been adopted. The amended charter will require Bond’s entire membership to ensure consistency and high quality in its safeguarding practices by taking collective action and implementing sector-wide solutions. These actions will be guided by the Commitments brought to the 2018 Safeguarding Summit.

The Bond Charter is the common vision, purpose, values and principles of the Bond network, made up of over 400 UK NGOs working in international development. The Charter outlines a shared commitment by Bond members to excellence, transparency and accountability and all Bond members are committed to the Bond Charter via their membership status. 

The Charter will now include the following text: 

We will respect the safety, well-being and rights of the communities we seek to serve and the people who work for us – wherever they are in the world and whatever the humanitarian or development challenges.  Respect means taking all possible steps to prevent sexual exploitation, abuse and harassment from occurring, and taking immediate action if it does; it also means putting the voices, rights and support of victims and survivors at the heart of our approach. Sexual exploitation, abuse and harassment are fundamentally about gender inequality and power imbalance and a profound effort will be needed if we are to ensure systemic and lasting cultural change. We will ensure that our safeguarding practice is consistent and high quality, taking collective action and implementing sector-wide solutions, guided by the Commitments brought to the 2018 Safeguarding Summit.

Caroline Nursey, Bond’s Chair and CEO at BBC Media Action said: 

“This year has seen a lot of soul searching by the NGO sector on safeguarding and Bond has been working with its membership to drive up standards on how sexual exploitation, abuse and harassment incidents are minimised, handled, reported and acted upon. Revising the Bond Charter is an important step to reflect the  step change we are seeing across the sector, and the Board is pleased that Bond’s members have wholeheartedly supported this significant amendment.”  

ENDS

Notes to Editors

  1. Bond's members have worked to improve their safeguarding policies and practices, building on the best examples from the aid and UK domestic sector. Our commitment to change document pulls this work together and demonstrates how the NGO sector will drive forwards consistency and leadership on safeguarding and was launched during the UK’s International Safeguarding Summit: Putting People First: Tackling sexual exploitation and abuse, and sexual harassment, in the aid sector. Read more: https://www.bond.org.uk/press-releases/2018/10/uk-ngos-to-collectively-raise-the-bar-on-safeguarding-0
  2. Bond is the UK network for organisations working in international development. Bond unites and supports a diverse network of over 400 civil society organisations and allies to help eradicate global poverty, inequality and injustice.
  3. The full text of Bond’s Charter can be read here: https://www.bond.org.uk/charter#the_charter
  4. For further information or interviews please contact Maryam Mohsin on 07555 336029 or [email protected]