"Approximately half of UN staff, doubt that people are treated with respect, or held accountable for ethical behaviour, and lack confidence that they can report misconduct without retaliation. Professional and director level staff exhibit the greatest concern regarding UN' support for ethical behaviour and its fostering of a respectful work environment," the survey results showed.
Fifty-one percent of those surveyed believed that the UN Secretariat staff was treated with respect, while 24 percent had a neutral opinion and 25 percent disagreed.
At the same time, 45 percent expressed confidence that staffers would be protected from retaliation after reporting misconduct or cooperating with investigations, while 27 percent felt the opposite and 28 percent were doubtful.
The report also showed that one-third of staff members felt uncomfortable challenging the status quo at the UN Secretariat.
While 37,801 employees were invited to participate in the poll, only 14,622, or 39 percent, responded. This falls below the average of 75 percent response rate that the survey usually receives.
On February 2, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said that he reaffirmed his complete commitment to the United Nation’s zero-tolerance policy on sexual harassment and proposed that this survey to be conducted. He also said that to tackle how the UN deals with harassment, the UN would set up a new helpline for confidential advice from mid-February, as well as introduce more training for staff members and seek to strengthen the protection of whistleblowers.