Sexual Abuse and Exploitation (SEA)

UNHCR has a zero tolerance to sexual exploitation and abuse of persons of concern. Sexual exploitation and abuse are unacceptable behaviours and prohibited for all United Nations and NGO partners’ staff members.

What is sexual exploitation? 

Any actual or attempted abuse of a position of vulnerability, differential power, or trust for sexual purposes.

What is sexual abuse? 

Any actual or threatened sexual activity carried out by force or under unequal or coercive conditions.

Sexual exploitation and abuse can happen to anyone—men, women, boys, and girls—at any age, and in any circumstance.

Protection from sexual exploitation and abuse

In line with United Nations standards of conductUNHCR staff members and NGO partners must not:

  • Have sexual activity with anyone in exchange for money, employment, preferential treatment, goods or services
  • Have sexual activity with any child under the age of 18 years old
  • Engage in any other form of sexually humiliating, degrading, or exploitative behaviour.


  • If you or any member of your community is asked by UNHCR or its partner to pay for food or assistance/aid
  • If you or any member of your community is invited by UNHCR or its partner for sexual relations   
  • If you or any member of your community is required to render services in exchange of food or assistance/aid

Report immediately to UNHCR Representation in South Sudan and/or to the Inspector General’s Office (IGO) at UNHCR Headquarters:

  • Email: [email protected]
  • Confidential fax: +41 22 739 7380
  • Mail: UNHCR, 94 Rue de Montbrillant, 1202 Geneva, Switzerland


In South Sudan can call on the interagency hotline +211 912 100 012,

+211 920 111 888 (Arabic),

+211 920 111 333 (English)

Please keep your report confidential from everyone at all times!

You will be contacted in the investigation process.

In your report, you should include:

  • What happened?
    •  Describe in detail what you know about the incident or incidents.
  • Who committed the alleged wrongdoing?
    • Do you know if anyone else was involved? Please provide full names, job titles and organization, if possible.
  • When and where did the incident or incidents occur?
    • Include dates and times, if possible.

Your report will be treated with discretion and be kept strictly confidential. Remember: any type of assistance provided by UNHCR or its partners to you is free of charge.