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16 Dec 2016

Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights

OHCHR invites comments on draft scoping paper on State-based non-judicial mechanisms by 30 January 2017

...This scoping paper...aims to provide a preliminary assessment of current practices and challenges with respect to the use of State-based non-judicial mechanisms as a way of enhancing access to remedy in cases of adverse human rights impacts that are business-related, and to identify areas where there may be a need for further research and/or legal development...

For the purpose of this initial scoping exercise, four “focus areas” have been chosen, each of which has clear relevance to business respect for human rights. These are:

  • complaints by employees in respect of breaches of labour standards, such as workplace health and safety standards or obligations of non-discrimination;
  • complaints by consumers in various contexts (e.g. product safety, healthcare; problems in the provision of essential services, including utilities and privatised and outsourced services);
  • complaints about breaches of environmental standards;
  • complaints about providers of security services.

This paper considers, in a preliminary way:

  • The role and purpose of State-based NJMs within domestic regulatory regimes;
  • The various institutional models presently in use;
  • Key issues and considerations in the design of State-based NJMs; and
  • Issues arising in cross-border cases...