Below are selected lawsuits brought against companies for alleged human rights abuses against children.  More lawsuits will be added to this section over time.  Further information on corporate legal accountability for human rights is on our Corporate Legal Accountability Portal.

Summary profile of lawsuit against Sanlu over melamine contaminated milk products in China causing children to fall ill
Business & Human Rights Resource Centre

Summary profile of lawsuits against Pfizer over Nigeria drug trials on children that allegedly caused deaths, injuries
Business & Human Rights Resource Centre

Summary profile of lawsuit against Firestone over alleged child labour in Liberia
Business & Human Rights Resource Centre

Nestle, Cargill, Archer Daniels Midland lawsuit re alleged trafficking of children from Mali to work in Côte d’Ivoire cocoa fields
Business & Human Rights Resource Centre

Builder, locked-up youths reach $17 million settlement in Pa. 'kids for cash' lawsuit [USA]
Associated Press, 16 Dec 2011
Developer settles lawsuit alleging innocent juveniles were locked up to occupy youth detention facilities built by his company.

Some lenders allegedly deny mortgages to women on maternity leave [USA]
Kenneth R. Harvey, Los Angeles Times, 12 Jun 2011
Legal actions brought against mortgage lenders allegedly discriminating against pregnant women & women on maternity leave

Tour Company Accused of Brazilian Child Sex Traffic
Jacqueline J. Holness, Courthouse News Service (USA), 15 Jun 2011
Lawsuit filed in US court alleges tour company Wet-A-Line recruited minors in Brazil to "engage in commercial sex acts"

Mother sues bank over maternity leave [Uganda]
Sunrise (Uganda), 24 Jun 2010
“A twenty six year old woman has taken her former employers to court accusing them of unfairly sacking her because she skipped one week from duty during which she delivered her baby…”

Bad milk turns sour – as judge rejects claims [Hong Kong]
Patsy Moy, Standard (Hong Kong), 28 May 2010
“A lawsuit seeking compensation for the parents of four children affected by tainted mainland milk powder two years ago has been thrown out…”

RI high court overturns lead-paint verdict [USA]
Peter Lord, Providence Journal (USA), 2 Jul 2008
“The Rhode Island Supreme Court yesterday brought an abrupt end to the state’s nine-year campaign to force some of the nation’s major corporations to clean up the lead-based paints that the state believes poisoned tens of thousands of Rhode Island children…”

DuPont agrees to settle fungicide lawsuits alleging birth defects for $9M
Associated Press, 4 May 2007
“The DuPont Co. has agreed to pay $9 million (€6.6 million) to settle two lawsuits alleging that its fungicide Benlate caused birth defects in children, according to court records and a federal regulatory filing...”

Human rights activists trying to sue Uzbek ministry for child labour, 25 Feb 2009
Activists of the Human Rights Alliance of Uzbekistan have submitted their suit to Tashkent’s Mirzo-Ulugbek district to demand the Education Ministry pay 100 million sums for damage inflicted on thousands of schoolchildren and teachers who were forced to pick cotton last autumn…”

UNICEF lauds Supreme Court for lifting ban on Philippine Milk Code implementing rules
UNICEF, 10 Oct 2007
“With this ruling, infant formula manufacturers will be prevented from making false or exaggerated health claims about their products…”
     Spilled corporate milk in the Philippines
     Cher S. Jimenez, Asia Times, 25 Jul 2007

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Company response
20 February 2020
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Author: Scatec Solar

Scatec Solar está comprometido con altos estándares para la gestión de la sostenibilidad, incluido la salud y la seguridad, la sostenibilidad ambiental, la conducta ética y los derechos humanos. Nos guiamos y cumplimos con estándares internacionalme...

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7 January 2020

So. Africa: Africa’s largest mobile operator & UK security company face allegations of supporting terrorist organizations

Author: Tanishaa Nadkar & Mfuneko Toyana, Reuters

‘MTN reviewing allegations after being named in U.S. complaint’...

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5 December 2019

USA: Class-action lawsuit filed in California to accuse TikTok of illegally harvesting data and sending it to China

Author: The Daily Beast

“California Class-Action Lawsuit Accuses TikTok of Illegally Harvesting Data and Sending It to China”, 2 December 2019...

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2 September 2019

USA: Amazon's decentralised next-day delivery network linked to exploitation of drivers, labour violations & fatalities; Inc. co. comments

Author: Caroline O'Donovan & Ken Bensinger, BuzzFeed News

"The Cost of Next-Day Delivery", 31 August 2019...

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16 June 2019

Australia: Trial begins on class action brought by Indonesian seaweed farmers allegedly affected by PTTEP oil spill

Author: Reuters, SBS News

"Indonesian seaweed farmers seek $200 million over oil spill in Australia", 17 June 2019...

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15 April 2019
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Author: Béatrice Héraud, Novethic (France) (copyright:

« Climat : Shell, attaqué en justice aux Pays-Bas, annonce de nouvelles mesures environnementales », 12 avril 2019 ...

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26 March 2019

Sierra Leone: Communities affected by diamond mining win right to sue OCTÉA Group companies over alleged human rights abuses

Attorneys representing 83 households affected by Koidu Ltd's diamond mining activities filed proceedings to get the right to sue Octéa group companies over alleged human rights abuses, including displacement, property damage, soil and water...

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Company response
4 June 2017

Response from Suez Cement with regards to concerns raised against Tourah Cement

Author: Suez Cement Group of Companies (SCGC)

[BHRRC received the following response from Suez Cement Group of Companies (SCGC) on 1 June 2017]...

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3 June 2017

Egypt: Tourah Cement security guards say they were arrested for peaceful sit-in over their dismissal

Thirty-two workers from Tourah Portland Cement Company, a subsidiary of HeidelbergCement, were arrested and brought to trial over accusations of crimes relating to an illegal protest. In April, security guards working at Tourah Cement announced a sit...

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3 June 2017

Egypt: Arrest of workers following sit-in at Tourah Cement Company

Author: Mada Masr (Egypt)

Update: Police arrest 32 workers following dispersal of sit-in at Tourah Cement Company, 23 May 2017...

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