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27 Sep 2017

Public Eye, Swiss Coalition for Corporate Justice

Switzerland: Govt. dismisses initiative demanding mandatory human rights due diligence for business; says voluntary measures are sufficient

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The Federal Constitution will be amended as follows:

Art. 101a Responsibility of business

 1 The Confederation shall take measures to strengthen respect for human rights and the environment through business.

 2 The law shall regulate the obligations of companies that have their registered office, central administration, or principal place of business in Switzerland according to the following principles: [...]

b.Companies are required to carry out appropriate due diligence...

c. Companies are also liable for damage caused by companies under their control where they have, in the course of business, committed violations of internationally recognized human rights or international environmental standards. They are not liable under this provision however if they can prove that they took all due care per paragraph b to avoid the loss or damage, or that the damage would have occurred even if all due care had been taken.