The last stage of consultation in the development of the CHS takes the form of a non-binding vote in which participants indicate whether in their opinion the CHS is good enough to be published and used.
The purpose of the non-binding vote (“straw poll”) is to provide an indication of the general trend of opinion on the acceptability of the CHS among members of the humanitarian community. Although not a formal vote, this final consultation is fundamental in order to establish the acceptance of the standard within the sector.
Respondents in favour of the publication of the CHS will be able to provide final comments on it if so they wish. However, respondents who consider that the CHS is not good enough for publication may submit their vote only if they indicate what needs to be changed for it to be acceptable to them.
All humanitarians are invited to take part in the consultation via an online survey. All participants will be required to share their names and contact details.
The third version of the CHS incorporates feedback gathered through the second phase of consultation and testing concluded in mid-September. This allowed more than 125 networks, individuals and organisations to offer feedback on content. Over 60 organisations from across the globe field-tested the standard, providing a wealth of information about its practicability. A feedback synthesis report will soon be available on the CHS website.
How is this new version of the CHS different from the previous one? The language is more accessible and duplications have been removed. In response to feedback, its structure has changed to accommodate nine commitments with matching key actions and organisational responsibilities.
The CHS describes essential elements of principled and accountable quality humanitarian action. Guidance notes and indicators will be developed in the future to provide a framework to support verification of performance.
Once the final consultation is closed on 17 October, its results will feed into an ultimate revision of the CHS, which will involve the 65-member CHS Technical Advisory Group. A report on the feedback received will be made available on the CHS website.
The final version of the CHS will be submitted for endorsement to the boards of the Humanitarian Accountability Partnership (HAP), People In Aid and the Sphere Project, all of which will meet separately during the first half of November.
The official launch of the CHS is to take place in Copenhagen on 12 December. The launch event will gather some 120 high-level participants from across the humanitarian sector.
Hosted by the Danish International Development Agency (DANIDA), the event is being organised by HAP, People In Aid and the Sphere Project together with the Steering Committee for Humanitarian Response (SCHR), a grouping of nine of the most influential humanitarian organisations.
In addition to launching the Core Humanitarian Standard on Quality and Accountability, the event will also serve as a platform for the presentation of the findings of the SCHR certification review process, which took place in parallel to the CHS development.
The purpose of the CHS is to contribute to a still better humanitarian response. As a single core humanitarian standard, which should be simple and easy to use, the CHS aims to benefit the whole sector by increasing consistency in the application of sectoral standards.
The CHS consists of a framework through which organisations commit to quality operational approaches and ways of working. It outlines policies, processes, procedures and practices needed in order to be accountable to crisis-affected communities. Adoption is voluntary and open to any organisation to use.