A few days ago, a quick memo on the debate about the need of an ombudsman for the humanitarian sector was published, with the signatures of Ed Schenkenberg van Mierop (HERE), Kate Halff (SCHR) and Pierre Hauselmann (HQAI).
To me, the content of the note is in a nutshell: let’s avoid to re-invent the wheel, as there has been a debate for a long time, that came up with some solutions, let’s work on and with them, in particular the CHS and its verification schemes, giving them a more recognized role.
I find myself in agreement with the note, and I wrote a few months ago about the role that a certification scheme can play in preventing and fighting PSEA in the humanitarian environment. I believe that the present standard can be improved with regard to measures to prevent and respond PSEA, but the road is in my opinion the correct one. Needless to say, the role of the donors will be pivotal in recognizing a value to these initiatives.
I am not sure if strenghtening these initiatives will necessarily exclude other initiatives that can be complementary (as an example, I think a registry of aid workers can be such a complementary resource). However, I am pretty sure that if they were to be abandoned or neglected in order to persue some miracolous and still to be identified silver bullet, it would be a waste of time, money and resources.