Minnie Driver said the decision to step down as an Oxfam ambassador following the sex abuse scandal engulfing the charity ‘broke my heart’.
Driver had been in the role for 20 years but walked away following allegations Oxfam workers – including disgraced ex-executive Roland Van Hauwermeiren – hired prostitutes in Haiti following the 2010 earthquake.
There has since been further explosive allegations made against the organisation.
Earlier this month, Driver became the first celebrity ambassador to step down, saying she was ‘devastated’ by the revelations and now she has revealed she quit the role to ‘send a message’.
Minnie Driver (pictured at a Vogue party this week) quit her role as celebrity ambassador for Oxfam in protest at the charity’s sex scandal. She said the decision ‘broke my heart’
The British star has worked with Oxfam for 20 years, donating a £72,000 lunch date to its 2008 Ebay auction
The 48-year-old actress, who was one of the charity’s 16 ambassadors, said in a series of tweets that she was ‘devastated’ by the Oxfam revelations
How did the Oxfam scandal erupt and what are the key developments?
The Oxfam scandal has rocked the charity and the entire aid sector.
Here are the key dates in how it erupted:
The scandal breaks.
The Times reveals that an internal Oxfam investigation found senior staff used prostitutes and held sex parties in Haiti in the aftermath of the 2010 earthquake, and the charity tried to cover it up.
Roland van Hauwermeiren, a Belgian Oxfam chief, admitted using prostitutes.
But rather than be sacked he was offered a deal – he would be allowed to resign and given one month’s notice if he co-operated with the investigation.
The men sacked for the Oxfam Haiti scandal were allowed to go on and get other jobs in the aid sector, it is revealed.
Mr van Hauwermeiren – the man at the centre of the scandal – went on to become head of mission for Action Against Hunger in Bangladesh in 2012-14.
It is revealed Oxfam knew of concerns about the conduct of two men caught up in the Haiti sex scandal before they were appointed to senior humanitarian roles.
The charity’s deputy chief executive, Penny Lawrence, resigns saying she is ashamed of how the charity handled the Haiti sex scandal.
Whistleblower Helen Evans says Oxfam’s chief executive, Mark Goldring, knew of allegations a woman was coerced into having sex in return for aid and failed to act.
Ms Evans, the charity’s global head of safeguarding from 2012-15, said there were allegations young volunteers were abused in Oxfam’s UK shops.
Minnie Driver quits as an ambassador to Oxfam.
Charity Commission announced a statutory inquiry into Oxfam to examine whether the charity is fit to be trusted with public and government support.
Archbishop Desmond Tutu quits as an Oxfam ambassador, saying that he was ‘deeply disappointed’ by the sex abuse scandal.
Mr Goldring sparks outrage by saying the backlash to the scandal has been overblown and saying ‘it is not like we murdered babies in their cots’.
Charity bosses are grilled by MPs on the international development select committee over the scandal. Mr Goldring apologises for his ‘murdered babies’ comments.
Driver, 48, told the Evening Standard: ‘I heard rumours about things, I asked questions, but I’d been assured there was nothing going on.
‘It cut me to the very heart. I needed to send a very clear message, not to the people I worked with on the ground over the years, but to the corporate people who knew this was going on and who were not transparent about it.’
Driver was joined in stepping down from the charity by Archbishop Desmond Tutu and singer Talia Storm.
The beleaguered boss of Oxfam – who has so far resisted calls to step down – was forced to issue a groveling apology over the Haiti scandal – as he revealed they have received 26 new reports of sexual exploitation in the wake of the crisis.
Chief executive Mark Goldring apologised for downplaying the charity’s scandal by saying that it was ‘not like we murdered babies in their cots’.
He said he made the ill-judged comment after six days of sleepless nights worrying and dealing with the scandal.
Mr Goldring, who is being investigated over his handling of a sexual assault complaint, apologised as he was hauled in front of MPs to be grilled in the scandal.
Mr Goldring, who earns nearly £150,000-a-year, told MPs: ‘I do apologise. I was thinking under stress, I had given many interviews…. I should not have said those things. It is not for Oxfam to judge issues of proportionality.’
He added: ‘I shouldn’t have put my own sleep, or lack of it, in the public domain.’
He said he made the remark after six days of no sleep, adding: ‘I make no excuses, I make an apology for comparing what I was going through with the bigger picture.
‘My first concern is the women of Haiti and anybody else who has been wronged as a result of Oxfam’s programme.’
And he said the aid organisation should have done more to protect the vulnerable people it worked with and ensure abusers could not work elsewhere in the sector.
It came as it was revealed that 7,000 people have pulled their donations to Oxfam in the wake of the scandal.
Meanwhile, Aid Secretary Penny Mordaunt said Oxfam’s former chief executive Barbara Stocking and deputy CEO Penny Lawrence ‘quite possibly deliberately’ misled the authorities over the Haiti scandal.
Earlier this month it emerged that Oxfam charity workers had paid prostitutes for sex in Haiti in the aftermath of the devastating 2010 earthquake.
But men accused of exploiting their position and power to have sex with women were allowed to go off and get jobs in other aid organisations, it emerged.
And whisteblowers have said that the scandal extended to the charity’s British shops where young volunteers have complained that they were sexually assaulted by staff members.
Meanwhile, Mr Goldring also revealed that last year Oxfam received 87 allegations of sexual misconduct.
He said 50 of those related to things happening in shops and in Oxfam’s trading operations and 35 incidents were reported to the Charity Commission.
And he also admitted that one of the men involved in the scandal in Haiti went on to work as a contractor for another branch of Oxfam.
He said: ‘I believe that one person was re-employed as a contractor indirectly by another Oxfam – not Oxfam GB.
‘That was a mistake. It shouldn’t have happened. It was a short term contract. It was a failing.’
He also revealed that 7,000 people have pulled their donations from the charity in the wake of the scandal.
Oxfam has been plunged into crisis after it emerged that Roland Van Hauwermeiren (pictured) used prostitutes in Haiti while he was stationed in the country dealing with the aftermath of he devastating 2010 earthquake
Mark Goldring (pictured in Parliament this week) issued a groveling apology for downplaying the charity’s scandal by saying that it was ‘not like we murdered babies in their cots’