Kate Sayer to lead new integrity and ethics team at Oxfam GB

Sayer was a senior consultant at the accountancy firm Sayer Vincent for almost 36 years

Kate Sayer
Kate Sayer

Oxfam GB has appointed Kate Sayer to lead a new integrity and ethics team as part of its response to the safeguarding crisis.

Sayer, a former Third Sector columnist, was a senior consultant at the charity accountancy firm Sayer Vincent for almost 36 years before taking up the role of director of integrity and ethics at Oxfam GB.

She is also a non-executive director of Charity Bank and a trustee of the Association of Chairs. She became chair of the NGO umbrella body Bond last year. 

An Oxfam GB spokesman told Third Sector the new team brought together existing roles focused on ethics, risk management, compliance and corporate responsibility, some of which previously sat in different teams across the organisation.

A 150-page Charity Commission statutory inquiry report about Oxfam GB, published in June, concluded there was "a culture of tolerating poor behaviour" at the charity.

The report said the charity broke promises to improve safeguarding and failed to thoroughly investigate allegations of child sexual abuse in such a way that it amounted to mismanagement.

Oxfam International also commissioned an independent report in the wake of the safeguarding scandal, which concluded last year that the charity prioritised the goals of its programmes over its core values and the principle of "do no harm" with communities, partners and staff.

"The recent reports into Oxfam by the Charity Commission and independent commission recommended a greater and clearer focus on integrity and ethics," the spokesman said today.

"We hope that bringing together a specialist team will help us strengthen compliance with laws, regulations and internal processes, and give us a more systemic approach to these issues within Oxfam GB."

He said that Sayer would work closely with Clifford Isabelle, director of global safeguarding. Both report directly to Danny Sriskandarajah, the charity’s chief executive.

He did not reveal how much Sayer would be paid.

"Oxfam GB reports the overall and average salaries of our directors in our annual report in the autumn," he said.

"We do not report the salaries of individual members of staff, with the exception of our chief executive, deputy chief executive and chief financial officer."

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