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16 Nov 2020

United Nations Global Compact

UN Global Compact announces support for mandatory human rights due diligence

The United Nations Global Compact today announced their strong support for mandatory human rights due diligence during a speech by CEO and Executive Director Sanda Ojiambo at the 9th Annual UN Forum on Business and Human Rights. 

The prevention of human rights violations and abuses is central to the mission of the United Nations Global Compact and its Ten Principles for responsible business conduct. Companies that focus on protecting human rights — and cultivate positive relationships with their stakeholders — can help ensure their business’ continued growth and social license to operate.

“Protecting the well-being and dignity of every person means preventing human rights abuses in business operations and value chains worldwide,” Ms. Ojiambo said, adding that the UN Global Compact “fully supports all efforts to develop legislation on mandatory human rights and environmental due diligence.” ...

Ms. Ojiambo further remarked that “relying solely on voluntary measures simply will not get us where we need to be” to meet corporate responsibility to respect human rights as described in the UN Guiding Principles for Business and Human Rights. These authoritative principles call on Governments to implement a “smart mix of measures” —  both voluntary, mandatory, national and international — to foster business respect for human rights rather than assuming that businesses prefer or benefit from State inaction.