Barnardo’s pledges action after racism scandal blights its fundraising department

An investigation has found “evidence of racist and discriminatory behaviour” within Barnardo’s fundraising department.

The independent investigation was instigated by the children’s charity last year after allegations of racism, racially motivated behaviour and associated management failures within its fundraising department were made.

The charity has pledged to take “the severest available disciplinary action” against individuals in the charity where evidence of racism is clear. This is now the subject of the charity’s internal investigations.

In addition, “some colleagues are under formal independent disciplinary investigation”, said the charity”.

In a statement it said: “The investigation was given the full support and assistance of the leadership team and access to all relevant colleagues, and documentation.

“Now concluded, the investigation found evidence of racist and discriminatory behaviour within the Fundraising department and a failure of the department’s leadership to adequately address a culture that engendered this behaviour.”

Barnardo’s added: “Barnardo’s does not condone racist and discriminatory behaviour, and this independent and thorough investigation was conducted expressly because we take any allegations of such behaviour extremely seriously.

"In line with Barnardo’s ongoing commitment to becoming an anti-racist organisation, we will be acting on a number of clear recommendations set out for the fundraising department and where appropriate, for the wider charity as a result of this report."

Barnardo’s is the latest in a number of charities to take action to address racism in their organisation.

Earlier this year Versus Arthritis said it would act after the publication of a report following allegations of racism and bullying at the charity. This includes implementing an action plan on diversity and inclusion.

Meanwhile, in December last year Westway Trust, the London community charity that supported Grenfell Tower tragedy victims, promised to tackle its “long term culture of institutional racism”.

Save the Children UK had found almost a third of those in its organisation have felt excluded or oppressed.

The NCVO is another voluntary sector organisation to tackle racism in its organisation.

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