UN Forum 2018: Materials launched

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28 November 2018

UNICEF & GCF launch online due diligence platform for co's to assess potential impacts on children's rights

Author: Unicef & Global Child Forum

The Children's Rights and Business Atlas is an online due diligence platform to facilitate understanding of actual and potential business impact on children. Interactive and data-driven, the Atlas provides an assessment of children’s rights across 195 countries and territories, and the degree to which children’s rights are respected, across the globe in the Workplace, at the Marketplace, and within the Community and Environment. In doing so, the Atlas enables business, industry and governments to go beyond the most widely known form of children’s rights risk—child labour—to better understand the underlying drivers of a broad spectrum of children’s rights risks through strategic planning for sustainable change. 

 Access the Children’s Rights and Business Atlas here: www.childrensrightsatlas.org 

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Article
27 November 2018

Intl. Council on Mining & Metals announces new membership requirements, committing members to implement UNGPs

Author: International Council on Mining & Metals

"ICMM is first industry body to commit to UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights as a condition of membership", 26 Nov 2018

Today, International Council on Mining and Metals (ICMM) announced new membership requirements to advance the sustainability performance of the mining sector, committing members to implement the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights...

[I]t will be the most far-reaching initiative to advance environmental and social performance in the mining industry...

ICMM’s Chief Executive said: “ICMM’s Council of 27 CEOs have shown real leadership in being the first industry body to commit to implementing the UN’s Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights...

Professor John Ruggie [...] said: “ICMM has repeatedly set the pace in the evolution of sustainability requirements for its industry, now including the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human rights; and as a CEO-led organization it has the credibility and leverage to do so.” 

The performance expectations are the latest evolution of ICMM’s sustainability framework that set out a more comprehensive set of environmental and social requirements, including issues such as labour rights, resettlement, local content, gender, access to grievance mechanisms, mine closure, pollution and waste that will be validated at the operational level...

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Article
27 November 2018

Italy releases revised National Action Plan on Business and Human Rights following mid-term review

Author: Inter-ministerial Committee for Human Rights

Ministry Plenipotentiary Fabrizio Petri, President of the Inter-ministerial Committee for Human Rights, during the 2018 UN Forum on Business and Human Rights, announced the release of [a revised National Action Plan following the] mid-term review.

NAP BHR ENG 2018

On this occasion, [...] the publication "Human Rights and Business: the implementation of principles and soft rules at the national level" (edited by Cristiana Carletti) [was also presented].

Human Rights and business

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Article
27 November 2018

Italy: New publication looks at implementation of human rights principles & rules for business at natl., European & intl. level

Author: Edited by Cristiana Carletti

This publication has a twofold aim: to promote larger public awareness on this issue, to understand business opportunities in compiling programmes and challenging actions to enhance economic development while respecting human rights and fundamental freedoms; to introduce a brief summary for experts on the recent national activities to address public, private, institutional and non-institutional instances working at the global and regional level in order to adopt common rules to strengthen human rights standards.

The publication is developed as follows: in Part One the first National Action Plan on business and human rights 2016-2021, adopted by Italy in December 2016 and voluntarily submitted to the United Nations, is introduced... In Part Two the most recent documents released in several intergovernmental systems (i.e. European Union, Council of Europe, United Nations) are examined to analyse specific aspects of the issue and to compare them with the Italian National Action Plan and its commitments.

This focus is aimed at giving the NAP an added value, due to its progressive application with reference to some global goals that Italy took into account in advance, calling for business support and its active and constant dialogue to this scope...

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Article
27 November 2018

UN Global Compact releases new report "Human Rights: The Foundation of Sustainable Business"

Author: UN Global Compact

"Human Rights: The Foundation of Sustainable Business" [c]elebrates the 70th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) and builds upon the UN Global Compact Progress Report. The report highlights insight and initiatives by Global Compact Local Networks around the world, presents snapshots of good practice from companies participating in the UN Global Compact and showcases initiatives that are advancing the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights.

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Article
26 November 2018

Danish Institute for Human Rights launches new database on human rights due diligence & 2030 Agenda

Author: Danish Institute for Human Rights

photo credit: DIHR

With the adoption of the 2030 Agenda, the world’s leaders have indicated a global pathway for transformative change in which business has a key role to play.  

However, business actions on the Sustainable Development Goals sometimes remain disconnected from efforts to increase corporate respect for human rights.

While the SDGs require rapid action if they are to be achieved by 2030, it is essential that respect for human rights remain an integral part of all such actions by the business community.  

In order to assist and inspire companies the Danish Institute for Human Rights has developed a database, which demonstrates that by putting respect for human rights at the centre of business conduct businesses can directly contribute to realising the Sustainable Development Goals...

The database provides over 100 real examples of businesses taking action to avoid and address their salient human rights issues. Alongside each example, users can see the SDGs and targets that the companies' actions are linked to...

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Article
26 November 2018

Engaging with big business: Dejusticia to conduct course on business & human rights in summer 2019

Author: Dejusticia

This course focuses on doctrine, practice and strategies for the implementation of human rights protections in the context of business activities, specifically exploring three mega-industries: food, pharmaceuticals, and mining. Both Global South and Global North practitioners will train participants on practical tools they can use and skills they can hone to engage more effectively with big industries...

Participants will learn the fundamentals of international instruments for the protection of human rights, and will develop practical skills to create effective strategies to deal with business impact on human rights...

We will work with case studies and practical activities, using methods of collaborative problem solving such as design thinking. We will participate in an immersive negotiation workshop, based on real negotiation experiences and devised to provide an intensive introduction to fundamental negotiation methods through a combination of theory and practice, with an emphasis on skill-building...

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Article
26 November 2018

New analysis released on National Action Plans on Business & Human Rights from 2013-2018

Author: Danish Institute for Human Rights

photo credit: DIHR

A new analysis from the Danish Institute of Human Rights shows, that as of November 2018, 21 states have already developed 22 NAPs (the UK has 2) while 11 more states are in the process of developing such plans. In addition, there are 15 states in which non-states initiatives are pushing for a NAP.

While there has been great enthusiasm for states to develop NAPs, there has been more limited focus on how successful current NAPs are in implementing the UNGPs and enhancing protections for rights-holders against business-related human rights abuse.

Without an awareness of the strengths and weaknesses of current NAPs, covering the development process, content, and implementation process, there is danger that an accountability gap grows.

By studying all the published NAPs, a team from the Danish Institute of Human Rights has identified both positives and a number of areas of concerns regarding both process and content related issues.

By gathering the information in one place and highlighting relevant findings, the hope is to provide insights to professionals working with the development of future NAPs.

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Article
26 November 2018

New book explores potential criminal responsibility of corporate actors in Colombian armed conflict

Author: Dejusticia

Note: The book is in Spanish.

The Final Peace Agreement between the Colombian government and the FARC-EP created a complex transitional justice system which includes the Special Jurisdiction for Peace (SJP) as it's justice component...

One innovative characteristic of the SJP is that it's competence is not limited to state actors and members of armed groups, but also includes third party actors... The book focuses on one particular subset of third-party actors, economic actors - that is actors whose participation in conflict-related crimes was linked to their economic or commercial activities. To address the potential criminal responsibility of these actors for their role in the conflict requires determining the patterns of their collaboration with the armed actors and translating that into concepts of criminal liability...

Through providing an overview of international criminal standards, key decisions from various other countries, and how they apply to the particular features of economic actor involvement, the book aims to answer difficult questions such as "What type of collaboration with an armed group gives rise to criminal responsibility?" and "Under what circumstances can they be absolved from criminal responsibility based on coercion?" ...

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Article
23 November 2018

Danish Institute for Human Rights publishes mapping on women in business & human rights

Author: Danish Institute for Human Rights

"Women in business and human rights", 21 Nov 2018

This mapping provides an overview of select topics for attention for states in strengthening their gender focus in United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs) implementation processes, including, but not limited to, National Action Plans on Business and Human Rights (NAPs).

The topics are:

  1. Employment and labour rights
  2. Land and natural resources
  3. Essential services and privatisation
  4. Trade and investment
  5. Access to effective remedy

For each topic, the mapping provides an overview of key gender issues, country examples from existing NAPs and other relevant sources on how these issues might be addressed, and key points for consideration for states on how to strengthen attention to the rights of women and girls in UNGPs implementation processes.

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