Char­ity’s cor­po­rate part­ners mon­i­tor­ing re­sponse to scan­dal

Western Mail - - NEWS -

A num­ber of Ox­fam’s cor­po­rate part­ners have said they are look­ing closely at how the char­ity has re­sponded to the sex scan­dal.

Marks & Spencer, Heathrow Air­port and Visa are among those listed as sup­port­ers, and the char­ity states on its web­site: “We couldn’t achieve what we do with­out our part­ners.”

A spokes­woman for Marks & Spencer, which has run a “Sh­wop­ping” part­ner­ship with Ox­fam since 2008, said the chain is mon­i­tor­ing how the char­ity is deal­ing with the sit­u­a­tion.

She said: “Th­ese are very se­ri­ous al­le­ga­tions. M&S con­tin­ues to mon­i­tor the sit­u­a­tion very closely as we seek to un­der­stand the steps that Ox­fam is tak­ing to ad­dress them and de­velop a ro­bust safe­guard­ing plan for the fu­ture.”

The ini­tia­tive, al­low­ing peo­ple to drop un­wanted clothes into M&S shops, has seen more than 28 mil­lion gar­ments do­nated in stores and Ox­fam shops, worth an es­ti­mated £19m, ac­cord­ing to the char­ity’s web­site.

Visa, an­other cor­po­rate part­ner of Ox­fam, said: “We are en­gaged with Ox­fam to un­der­stand what steps have been taken to ad­dress staff mis­con­duct and en­sure align­ment with our own stan­dards and val­ues.”

Ox­fam said the part­ner­ship with Visa had “trans­formed the se­cu­rity, speed and ef­fi­ciency with which Ox­fam can dis­trib­ute life-sav­ing funds to peo­ple af­fected by nat­u­ral dis­as­ter”.

Heathrow Air­port, a part­ner since 2013, has un­der­taken var­i­ous fundrais­ing ac­tiv­i­ties through the years, rais­ing £1 mil­lion.

A spokes­woman said in a state­ment: “We are in touch with the char­ity and are tak­ing this mat­ter very se­ri­ously.”

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