UK official challenged at conference on sex abuse

LONDON (AP) — A demonstrator has confronted the U.K.’s international development secretary at a conference on sex abuse in the aid sector, complaining that women who have spoken out about abuse are not being heard.

Alexia Pepper de Caires challenged UK development chief Penny Mordaunt on stage at the Queen Elizabeth II Center in London.

Pepper de Caires says women who have been “radically vocal” on abuse had been shut out. She says she thought “this conference needed to be more than just a shiny, glossy piece for the cameras and press to say all the right things are being done.”

Charities have come under increased scrutiny following allegations that staff from the aid organization Oxfam used prostitutes while working in Haiti after the 2010 earthquake.

Mordaunt announced a pilot program to improve background checks on humanitarian staff.

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