Well, yes and no

Oxfam refused to ban staff from using prostitutes saying it would “infringe their civil liberties”, a training manual has revealed.

The guidance, still available on the charity’s website, says that they “strongly discourage” their workers from paying for sex but a total ban would be “impractical”.

Freedom of contract does mean they can insist on the idea. As employees can refuse to sign such a contract.

There can also be a more general term, not to do anything illegal. Or to create disrepute for the organisation.


14 comments on “Well, yes and no

  1. I don’t think I have worked anywhere where having orgies on property provided by the company would not get you sacked. Especially if you made them dress in own-brand t-shirts.

  2. ” a fundamental principle that any transaction of this sort is the result of an unequal power dynamic and is therefore exploitative”.

    Fucking right it is.
    And there’s little doubt where the power lies & who’s being exploited.
    My sympathy’s with vulnerable Oxfam workers.

  3. Or to create disrepute for the organisation.

    Bringing the organisation into disrepute is a good way. So is behaviour unbecoming an officer. Same sort of deal.

    I think that they are entitled to insist their employees do not sleep with under-aged prostitutes.

    I see Doctors Without Borders has sacked 19. I am enjoying this so much. I know it is a sign of poor moral character but I have had to put up with smug lecturing from these c*nts for decades. Bring it on.

  4. Oxfam – Unwilling to condemn the use of brass’s by their own staff, because whilst morally dubious, it is legal.

    Oxfam – Actively willing to condemn tax avoidance, because err.?

  5. Maybe it is just simply impractical. No women want to go into the danger zones, and no men want to stay there in indefinite grime and stress without any ‘comfort’.

    I can understand that this is not great PR for Oxfam, but at the same time, as long as
    – they were paying going rates
    – it wasn’t illegal
    – it wasn’t coercive.
    I don’t think there’s grounds for all these fainting fits.

  6. The only long-term solution is for aid organisations to insist that their workers are monks, or acknowledge that humans are humans and ensure that only nookie paired workers go.

  7. For some reason, the British Embassy in Ecuador sent a team of staff to assist in Haïti, including an acquaintance of mine. Her descriptions of the squalor and filth and human misery make me question just what sort of person would even be able to achieve sexual excitement in such circumstances

  8. ‘The only long-term solution is for aid organisations to insist that their workers are monks”

    Many years ago as a very young man I had a job working for a bank that required me to travel the world and stay in the best hotels (at one point, aged 26, I had a rented 7 bedroom house outside New York, a duplex apartment in Brussels and spent 46 weeks away from home staying in hotels like the Savoy in. London and the Mandarin in Hong Kong).

    Only condition was – behave yourself. Anything that might remotely bring the bank into disrepute and you are out on your ear. Needless to say I was never found out.

  9. I can understand that this is not great PR for Oxfam, but at the same time, as long as
    – they were paying going rates
    – it wasn’t illegal
    – it wasn’t coercive.
    I don’t think there’s grounds for all these fainting fits.

    I think it’s a case that Oxfam use their supposed do-gooder status to circumvent all sorts of laws in carrying out their activities. A commercial company could not just rock up in Haiti within days of an earthquake and start doing whatever it likes, but Oxfam is permitted to because they argue they’re doing charitable work. Now we learn that they were there for sex tourism, we’re entitled to ask why they were granted special privileges. If I were running a tin-pot country, I’d be hitting Oxfam up for back taxes and charging their personnel with visa violations.

  10. An Oxfam employee should be able to spend his wages as he sees fit without bringing Oxfam’s reputation into question. Unfortunately, this private conduct has done so. So now the question is: Is Oxfam’s access to taxpayer loot so secure that it can ignore harm to its reputation?

    Could Oxfam be severed in two, to separate its charity functions from its continual advocacy that wealth causes poverty?

    In Boston, a footballer-turned-talk-host ridicules an Asian player agent using a pidgin accent (which the agent does not have). The station tomorrow will broadcast 12 hours of compelling “best-of” programming, as its entire on-air staff is subjected to corporate Sensitivity Training. A key in this decision was government agencies suspending their advert buys.

  11. Here’s a list of NGOs who in 2014 supported sex workers’ rights – e.g. the right to share premises for safety and security, that sort of thing
    Oxfam is not on it.

    The EU Parliament thinks sex workers should not have the protection of being able to organise and work together. The EU funds Oxfam.
    It looks to me like the political wing of Oxfam is full of hypocrites whose opinions are for sale.

  12. So that Belgian guy has released a statement saying that, while he worked in Haïti, he was in a relationship with a Haitian woman and did not pay for sex. Well that’s OK then, isn’t it!

  13. They don’t really get it.

    Its not that the Oxfam morons patronized prostitutes. If they had been there working hard at . . . whatever the hell it is NGO’s are supposed to be doing, hardly anyone would have batted an eye.

    Its that they set up a private whorehouse and then spent their time in between getting ‘B’ roll for more begging adverts and schoozing the local government officials (to bribe them, the better to keep the money rolling in) in their own little sex-tourism retreat.

    On the taxpayer’s dime (er, ten pee?).

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