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16 Nov 2020

Corporate Human Rights Benchmark

Measuring 230 global companies on their human rights performance

The COVID-19 crisis has exposed and exacerbated systemic weaknesses, inequalities and unacceptable practices throughout global value chains. With only ten years to go to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), it is clear, more than ever, that urgent change is needed if we are to realise the ambitions of the 2030 agenda.

Against this backdrop, the 2020 Corporate Human Rights Benchmark assesses the human rights disclosures of 230 global companies across five sectors identified as presenting a high risk of negative human rights impacts. These sectors are agricultural products, apparel, extractives, ICT manufacturing and, for the first time, automotive manufacturing.

The results show that there has been progress on previous years...

However, two significant challenges have emerged.

The first is that only a minority of companies demonstrate the willingness and commitment to take human rights seriously. The second challenge is arguably more pernicious and relates to the disconnect between commitments and processes on the one hand and actual performance and results on the other. If we are to achieve the SDGs by 2030, we need to ensure that strong commitments and management systems deliver their intended effects. Additionally, we need all companies to participate in this effort...

The average score for automotive companies is 12%, the lowest score ever for a CHRB-benchmarked sector...

The automotive companies included in the 2020 CHRB were also assessed by the Climate and Energy Benchmark. When comparing both assessments, almost no correlation could be found between a company’s relative performance on either benchmark...