Administrator's Action Alliance for Preventing Sexual Misconduct (AAPSM)

Prevent Sexual Misconduct. Promote Respect and Accountability in our Workplace and Programs

USAID has zero tolerance for sexual misconduct, including harassment, exploitation or abuse of any kind among staff or implementing partners. In March 2018, USAID Administrator Mark Green established the Action Alliance for Preventing Sexual Misconduct (AAPSM), an intra-Agency alliance charged with leading our work on addressing sexual misconduct in all forms, including harassment, exploitation and abuse. As part of the AAPSM launch, the Administrator hosted a Forum on Preventing Sexual Misconduct, which brought together senior USAID staff, the USAID Inspector General, and representatives from key partners — including NGOs, for-profit contractors, and United Nations (U.N.) agencies.


Prevent Sexual Exploitation and Abuse

  • Work across the globe to protect our beneficiaries and advance human dignity by preventing sexual exploitation and abuse;
  • Elevate the voice of survivors of sexual abuse and exploitation by putting their wishes, rights and well-being at the forefront of our efforts; and
  • Review and revise our existing policies and procedures to strengthen accountability and compliance, in consultation with our external partners and beneficiaries.

Prevent Workplace Sexual Harassment

  • Promote zero tolerance of sexual misconduct, including sexual harassment, at USAID by strengthening the Agency’s policies and procedures for effectively reporting and responding to incidents of sexual harassment;
  • Foster a respectful culture at USAID that does not tolerate sexual misconduct or harassment, and that values reporting, respects survivors, and prevents retaliation; and
  • Demonstrate accountability to USAID employees and stakeholders by using data to measure success.


In March and April 2018, Administrator Mark Green testified before the House Foreign Affairs Committee and Senate Foreign Operations Subcommittee on USAID’s efforts to protect vulnerable populations and to advance human dignity by eliminating sexual misconduct in international aid. USAID has also taken the following actions since the launch of the AAPSM:

  • Revised standard provisions for grants and contracts to clarify that our implementers’ employee codes of conduct must be consistent with international standards on protection from sexual exploitation and abuse, and issued guidance to acquisition and assistance implementing partners to reaffirm USAID’s zero tolerance for sexual exploitation, abuse and fraud;
  • Launched a mandatory, Agency-wide sexual harassment training, released an enhanced, mandatory counter-trafficking in persons (C-TIP) training, and piloted a new Unwanted Attention/Sexual Harassment and Bystander Intervention training for field staff;
  • Reiterated our commitment to preventing sexual exploitation and abuse by endorsing the G7 Whistler Declaration on Protection from Sexual Exploitation and Abuse in International Assistance, and led the drafting and issuance of the Tidewater Joint Statement on Combating Sexual Exploitation and Abuse in the Development and Humanitarian Sectors;
  • Conducted intensive field consultations with USAID staff, partners and other stakeholders from around the world. Participants represented more than 100 countries and included more than 1,000 representatives from NGOs, 600 representatives from private contracting companies, and 150 representatives from public international organizations;
  • Issued revised Standards of Conduct for USAID employees worldwide outlining responsibilities for preventing and addressing sexual misconduct;
  • In cooperation with the Society for International Development, hosted a conversation with USAID implementing partners and other stakeholders titled, “Building a Culture of Respect: USAID’s Efforts to Prevent Sexual Misconduct;”
  • Launched a comprehensive policy review process that will result in enhanced, comprehensive policies addressing internal sexual misconduct as well as sexual exploitation and abuse in early 2019; and,
  • Along with 22 other donors, negotiated and signed on to groundbreaking international commitments on preventing sexual exploitation and abuse at the 2018 Safeguarding Summit.


  • USAID employees are required, and implementing partners are encouraged, to report all allegations of sexual misconduct that affect beneficiaries — whether the allegations involve USAID personnel, grantees or contractors — to the Office of the Inspector General at For grants, see Implementing Partner Notice #6; for contracts, see Implementing Partner Notice #10.
  • Allegations of sexual exploitation and abuse that involve employees of USAID’s grantees or contractors must be reported to the relevant USAID Agreement or Contracting Officer.
  • All allegations of workplace sexual harassment at USAID — regardless of hiring mechanism — should be reported to the Office of Civil Rights and Diversity at, or by telephone at 202-712-1110. All USAID managers are required to report allegations within 24 hours of becoming aware of them.


Latest Updates

AAPSM Employee Toolkit


AAPSM Manager's Toolkit

Last updated: November 14, 2018

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