Human rights and business

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Timeline[edit]

Human rights due diligence[edit]

Human rights due diligence or HRDD means giving w:due diligence to the w:human rights aspects of your planned operation.

“Due diligence is an investigation of a business or person prior to signing a contract, or an act with a certain w:standard of care.”

International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights[edit]

The w:International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights is a multilateral treaty approved by the UN General Assembly. It came into force in 1976 and it commits its parties to work toward the granting of w:economic, social, and cultural rights (ESCR) to the Non-Self-Governing and Trust Territories and individuals, including w:labour rights and the w:right to health, the w:right to education, and the w:right to an adequate standard of living. (Wikipedia)

United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights[edit]

The w:United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs) were presented in 2011 and are considered to be the first global standard for preventing and addressing the risk of adverse impacts on human rights linked to business activity, and continue to provide the internationally accepted framework for enhancing standards and practice regarding business and human rights.

The UNGPs encompass three pillars outlining how states and businesses should implement the framework:

  1. The state duty to protect human rights
  2. The corporate responsibility to respect human rights
  3. Access to remedy for victims of business-related abuses

Human Rights Impact Assessment[edit]

“Human Rights Impact Assessment is a process for systematically identifying, predicting and responding to the potential human rights impacts of a business operation, capital project, government policy, or trade agreement. It is designed to complement a company or government’s other impact assessment and due diligence processes and to be framed by appropriate international human rights principles and conventions.”

Ykkösketjuun[edit]

In 2018 a Finnish due diligence law project, #Ykkösketjuun was launched to drive forward the need for a due diligence law that makes makes companies liable for unsustainable business practices also abroad.

In 2019 the new Finnish government published their program that contained the 3 following instances of the Finnish word "yritysvastuu", which is translated to "business responsibility". One could translate it as "liability" and in fact it does bring new liabilities for some businesses, but if you are responsible, you'll never be held liable for anything.


Finnish / suomeksi Translated to English from [5] Commentary

"Suomi kehittää yhteistyössä elinkeinoelämän kanssa yritysvastuuta koskevaa sitovaa sääntelyä osana YK:n ja OECD:n puitteissa tapahtuvaa uudistamistyötä."

"Finland, in cooperation with the [domestic] business and livelyhood [organizations], develops the regulation regarding business responsibility partaking in the reformation work at the UN and the OECD."

"Selvitetään mahdollisuutta huolellisuusvelvoitteeseen perustuvaan EU-tasoiseen yritysvastuulakiin, joka huomioi eri kokoiset yritykset ja kansainväliset arvoketjut."

"We explore the possibility for a due diligence based EU-level business responsibility law, which takes into account different sized businesses and the international value chains."

"Tehdään selvitys, tavoitteena säätää yritysvastuulaki, joka perustuu yrityksille asetettavaan niin kotimaista kuin ulkomaista toimintaa koskevaan huolellisuusvelvoitteeseen. Selvitys tehdään elinkeino-, yrittäjä- ja palkansaajajärjestöjen kanssa ottaen erityisesti huomioon pk-yritysten aseman. Vastaavaa tavoitetta edistetään EU:ssa."

"An exploratory investigation will be made with the aim of legislating a business responsibility law, which is based on a requirement of due diligence in both domestic and foreign operations. The investigation will be conducted in conjunction with business and livelyhood, entrepreneurs' and workers' interest groups, paying special attention to the sitations SMEs. The same goal will be advanced in the EU."

See also in Wikipedia[edit]

External links to sites combating modern slavery and human trafficking[edit]

External links to sites dealing with human rights in business[edit]

References[edit]