Complaints & Feedback

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UNHCR provides a trusted, respectful and inclusive environment where people should feel safe. Anyone having concerns or suspicions about possible misconduct by a UNHCR staff or UNHCR’s partner, including sexual exploitation and abuse, regardless of that person’s position, should report such concerns.

What is misconduct?

All UN staff members, as well as staff of UNHCR’s partners, are bound to a code of conduct. Possible misconduct can include:

  • Sexual exploitation and abuse against persons of concern to UNHCR.
  • Fraud (e.g. falsifying a document) ;
  • Corruption (e.g. taking money from refugees or others).
  • Theft and embezzlement (e.g. stealing equipment or money).
  • Harassment, including sexual harassment.
  • Assault, threats or retaliation.
  • Non-compliance with local laws.

What are sexual exploitation and abuse?

UNHCR’s position is clear and has been reiterated on several occasions by UNHCR’s High Commissioner: sexual misconduct is unjustifiable and must be eradicated from UNHCR operations.

  • Sexual exploitation and abuse affect refugees, asylum seekers and other displaced people.
  • Sexual exploitation is defined as an actual or attempted abuse of someone’s position of vulnerability (such as a person depending on you for survival, food rations, schoolbooks, transport or other services), differential power or trust, to obtain sexual favours, including but not only, by offering money or other social, economic or political advantages. It includes trafficking and prostitution.
  • Sexual abuse means the actual or threatened physical intrusion of a sexual nature, whether by force, or under unequal or coercive conditions. It includes sexual slavery, pornography, child abuse and sexual assault.

How to report misconduct or sexual exploitation and abuse?

If you are aware of, or have concerns or suspicions about a possible case of misconduct related to UNHCR, please report this to UNHCR via email at [email protected]

You can also report it directly to the Inspector General’s Office (IGO) at UNHCR Headquarters:

  • In person or by post: 94, rue de Montbrillant, Case postale 2500, 1211 GenevaCase Postale 2500, CH-1211 Geneva 2 Depot Switzerland
  • By confidential email: [email protected]
  • By using the 💻 online complaint form

Your report will be treated with discretion and kept strictly confidential.

➡️For further information, please visit the Inspector General Office page.

See also: