Oxfam ought to take a step in UNICEFs direction, with their recent breaking news announcement that Deputy Director Justin Forsyth is resigning after facing three complaints of inappropriate behaviour towards female staff.
The ex-boss of UNCIEF and Save the Children was said to have ‘unreservedly apologised’ to the three female staff at the head of the investigation.
According to reports, he was accused of sending inappropriate texts to young female staff members commenting on their outfits, though details are not yet confirmed.
From a PR point of view, this was really the best thing that the charity could have done moving forward.
Because this is exactly what people want to see in light of a scandal. When it comes to charities, their followers don’t want to pull donations or halt their support as ultimately the work the charities do are admirable. But, if there is someone corrupt within the organisation then people begin to question it. What do you do when you have an organisation you wholly support, that employs people that you wholly don’t? You remove the toxicity from the source and this is exactly what UNCIEF has done – meaning nobody has to stop supporting the charity due to one or two individuals with questionable morals.
What more, the fact that Forsyth has come forward and personally announced his resignation, followed by the reasoning ‘he did not want to hurt the charity’ leaves room for forgiveness as ultimately, this man acted in the best interests of the charity he had been invested in for many years and this portrays him in the best light possible in the media whilst surrounded by such allegations.
Some may say that this was no more than a selfish act to keep oneself out of the public eye, however looking past that and viewing this solely from a PR perspective, Forsyth’s detachment from the organisation allows it to move forward, free from the baggage of a (possibly forthcoming legal) scandal which could have only ever caused damage.
Whether this was the work of good PR (which I don’t doubt) or simply a good hearted act of the former Deputy Director, one thing we can all agree on is that this is the best possible thing that could have come out of the situation and now UNCIEF can continue with the good work that they were typically so famed for before.