Regulator agrees terms of an independent review of Oxfam’s safeguarding

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The Charity Commission has agreed the terms of reference for an independent external review of Oxfam’s safeguarding. 

This review will work with the Commission’s statutory inquiry into the charity, which was opened in February amid a raft of concerns about how Oxfam had responded to safeguarding issues. 

It will be chaired by Kate Gallafent QC and the review will be conducted by Jim Gamble QPM, chief executive of Ineqe Group Limited, an independent company with considerable expertise in safeguarding matters. The company is being paid by Oxfam.

The review will look at Oxfam’s current safeguarding arrangements, its management of safeguarding allegations since 2011 and whether the charity has reported relevant and applicable matters properly to the Charity Commission and other statutory funders. 

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.” 

It is separate from the independent commission appointed last month by Oxfam, which is being chaired by Zainab Bangura, a former under-secretary general of the United Nations, and Katherine Sierra, a former vice president of the World Bank, and will look at the charity’s culture, policy and practices. 

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