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Briefing

20 Oct 2021

Beyond social auditing: Key considerations for mandating effective due diligence

Shutterstock (purchased)

Global businesses often rely on social audits to manage human rights issues in their supply chains, despite evidence the model and its underlying logic are not fit for the purpose of improving outcomes for people and planet. The EU Sustainable Corporate Governance Initiative, including mandatory human rights and environmental due diligence (mHREDD) provides a key opportunity for a more comprehensive, effective and transformative approach.

To realise its potential, the Initiative needs to provoke best efforts to assess risks and address them, not a mechanical tick-box exercise which has characterised too many companies’ approaches to their duty of care to workers and communities. This briefing has been designed to provide policymakers and legislators with starting points for mandating effective due diligence.

These include:

  1. Risk-based approach to prevent and address harm across all operations and value chains
  2. Meaningful and safe engagement with affected stakeholders
  3. Responsible purchasing practices, business and investments models, and increasing leverage with suppliers
  4. Access to remedy

Further resources

Hearing the human: Ensuring due diligence legislation effectively amplifies the voices of those affected by irresponsible business

We discussed safe and effective engagement with over 60 HRDs and developed recommendations to the European Commission, EU Parliament and Council of the EU.

Mandatory due diligence

Latest news on mHREDD, national and regional developments, public company statements in support of mHREDD, guidance for companies and governments, and examples of company implementation of human rights due diligence.

Beyond Social Auditing

Numerous reports have found the social audits to be ineffective in capturing human rights abuses. What are the solutions and options for reform?