For persons in power, protecting, saving, authority or helping roles to take advantage of, use and/or abuse persons in vulnerable situations, and especially those whom they are meant to be helping or protecting, is the worst form of violation, as it cuts to the very core of the horror of dehumanization.
For any group to hide its own harms being committed by persons within its own ranks, and the socio-structural cultural norms therein that allow for such violations, is to enable the abuse and is a part of the cycle of violation. when an institution or group is more concerned with upholding its own image than facing its own flaws and accountability, corruption will always be present.
IOSDE strongly holds that the United Nations must be an institution of self-critique and internal process, yes, but also of accepted external critique and review, as any group or person of power, influence, authority or otherwise needs to be for true change and progress in the direction of actualized human rights.
The article The UN’s Shame: Sexual Exploitation and Abuse in UN Peacekeeping, by Kathleen Jennings, posted 21 Oct 2015, promotes an important discussion on these issues in the context of UN Peacekeepers and sexual and otherwise abuse of vulnerable persons and the UN's response therein. Ms. Jennings writes:
"...the UN’s response could be considered as much an attempt to protect the UN’s reputation as to protect vulnerable local residents. Thus far, it has done little to change the underlying problem – a potent mix of militarized, instable environments that provide peacekeepers with ample opportunity and, thanks to multiple, sometimes weak chains of command, little actual oversight; a rampant sense of impunity, helped along by the UN’s institutional deference to the rights of the accused over the rights of the accuser; racialized and gendered stereotypes of locals among peacekeepers, which are often reinforced by the in-mission training they received; and an entrenched ‘boys will be boys’ attitude among many within the UN system.
[...] As one of my own sources, a sex worker who (allegedly) suffered a violent assault at the hands of a MONUSCO (UN Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo) peacekeeper, told me when I asked her why she did not make a report: the UN only looks out for the UN." (IOSDE emphasis)
We hope you will consider all walks of life in which persons in vulnerable circumstances have been and are being taken advantage of, used and abused when needing help, equality or protection, and, socio-structurally, as well as culturally, in the context of group and/or institutional dynamic, why such re-victimization is able to happen.
IOSDE will continue to address these issues and suggests that the international human rights family and all persons do so as well.