Racism and discrimination run against the fundamental values of our organisation. Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders (MSF) is an independent medical humanitarian organisation. For almost five decades we have offered medical assistance to people based on needs and irrespective of their race, religion, gender, or political affiliation. We also speak out, including when we witness acts of violence, or deprivation of care, directed towards people simply because of who they are.
As a movement, MSF has binding principles which we share – in particular, the Charter and the Behavioural Commitments. They state how unacceptable discrimination in general is for MSF. This means that individuals remain accountable for their behaviour and while different offices and projects may have different ways of enforcing these principles, we are united in our commitment to them.
But despite our strong values and humanitarian commitment, despite all the work supporting better inclusion and diversity, MSF is not immune to racism and we are very aware that there is still a lot more work to do. We are well aware, for example, that a key issue is that people from western countries are still over-represented in our senior management in headquarters and in the field.