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Commentary: Overview of Intl. Bar Association business & human rights handbook for lawyers & its domestic implementation

Author: Stéphane Brabant & Elsa Savourey, Herbert Smith Freehills, on Business and Human Rights Journal, Published on: 1 September 2017

"From Global Toolbox to Local Implementation: The IBA Practical Guide on Business and Human Rights for Business Lawyers", 17 Apr 2017

In-house counsel and lawyers who advise businesses are increasingly required to integrate human rights into their practice of law. This integration is the result of enhanced international standards, domestic laws, evolving best practices, and increasing clients’ requests. The Practical Guide on Business and Human Rights for Business the latest testament to this integration and to the new role of lawyers in the twenty-first century.

Human rights are everywhere, both inside and outside companies....As a result, the legal practices connected to human rights are...diverse...However, only a few lawyers advising businesses know what human rights mean in practice for them...

The Practical Guide is to date the most advanced initiative to help bridge the gap between the fact that lawyers feel disconnected from human rights when advising businesses, and the contribution these lawyers could actually make...This piece first explains...what it means in practice for lawyers and law firms to advise businesses on human rights and what the related risks and opportunities are. The piece then goes on to address the challenges associated with ensuring that the Practical Guide reaches the legal profession through implementation at the domestic level...

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