Working with everyone to advance human rights in business.
View this email in your browser

Weekly Update - 18 November 2015

Lead Story
2,300 participants from 130 countries gather at the 4th Annual UN Forum on Business & Human Rights in Geneva
From us
Asia & Pacific
Europe & Central Asia
Middle East & No. Africa
From Business & Human Rights Resource Centre
Guest Blog: "Private sector accountability & the SDGs: What is the role of the UN Guiding Principles?"

Uwe Gneiting, Private Sector Department at Oxfam America

Video tutorials: How to explore our Company and Government Action Platforms

2 vacancies at Business & Human Rights Resource Centre
UN Working Group on business & human rights survey on "States as economic actors"

Updated assessments of National Action Plans

Intl. Corporate Accountability Roundtable (ICAR) & European Coalition for Corporate Justice (ECCJ)

  • assesses existing plans by govts. of Denmark, Finland, Lithuania, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, United Kingdom
Canadian judge declines to hear Guatemalan farmers’ lawsuit against Tahoe Resources over severe injuries; rules case should be heard in Guatemala

MiningWatch Canada; Canadian Press

  • summary profile of lawsuit also provided
US Court of Appeals denies petitions by Amnesty Intl. & the SEC for rehearing on conflict minerals disclosure rule

Electronic Component News Magazine (USA); Conflict Minerals Law (USA)

  • petitions were attempting to challenge earlier ruling that part of the Conflict Minerals Rule violates free speech of companies
Focus on Labour Exploitation (FLEX) launches Labour Exploitation Accountability Hub
  • provides information on domestic legal frameworks for govt. & corporate accountability for labour exploitation
"Extracting minerals, extracting wealth": Report claims tax avoidance & tax incentives deprive Zambia of billions of dollars annually

War on Want (UK)

  • cites Associated British Foods, Glencore, Vedanta - media statements by companies & previous responses on this issue provided
Tanzania: Large-scale land deal for tourism has forced Maasai "out of their way of life"

Thomson Reuters Foundation

Côte d'Ivoire: Many victims of 2007 toxic waste dump by boat chartered by Trafigura yet to receive compensation

Voice of America

Brazil: Dams burst at iron ore mine operated by Samarco (joint venture BHP Billiton, Vale), causing deaths & social and environmental damages; company statements provided

Movement of People Affected by Dams; Guardian (UK); Associated Press; Reuters; BHP Billiton; Vale

Colombia: Govt. presents draft National Action Plan on business & human rights

Coalition of labour & consumer groups file NAFTA and OECD complaints alleging labour abuses at Mexican retailer, Chedraui Commercial Group

United Food and Commercial Workers Intl. Union (UFCW), FAT (Authentic Labor Front), Los Angeles Alliance for a New Economy (LAANE), Project on Organizing, Development, Education, and Research (PODER)

  • abuses said to be ongoing in USA & Mexico
  • includes allegations of sham unions & a "campaign of coercion" against workers seeking a living wage & improved conditions
Mexico: Fishermen & locals protest against Mira Company's Tres Santos tourism & residential complex over negative impacts on their livelihoods


  • previous response by Mira Company also provided
Asia & Pacific
Australia: ANZ Bank CEO commits to helping employees facing domestic violence to take steps for protection

Financial Review (Australia)

Haze pollution in Southeast Asia: Experts advance idea that it could violate intl. law & be subject of an investment treaty claim against Indonesia

Global Arbitration Review

Indonesia: Clean Clothes Campaign says workers in factory that had supplied adidas and Mizuno unfairly dismissed in 2012
  • we invited adidas & Mizuno to respond - responses provided
UN experts & civil society respond to AIIB (Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank) consultations on Draft Environmental and Social Framework

Special Rapporteurs & Independent Experts of the UN Human Rights Council; NGO Forum on ADB; Amnesty Intl.

China: Walmart workers still pushing for genuine trade union elections, almost a decade after it became first foreign company to accept unionisation

Diplomat (Japan)

Europe & Central Asia
EU issues guidelines on labelling products from Israeli settlements in Palestine

Guardian (UK)

UK: Law Society publishes guidance for law firms on equal pay

Law Society of England and Wales (UK)

Middle East & North Africa
Qatar: National Human Rights Committee holds workshop on migrant workers’ protection

Construction Week Online

Company responses Non-responses
Forthcoming events:
  • roundtable on legally binding treaty on business & human rights (Geneva, 19 Nov)
  • "Learning Lab on Public Procurement & Human Rights" (Geneva, 19 Nov)
  • launch of the Network on Business, Conflict & Human Rights (Geneva, 19 Nov)
  • summit on transforming CSR in Qatar (Doha, 23-25 Nov)
  • workshop on ethical trade (London, 24 Nov)
  • "Sustainable Seafood Sourcing Conference" (London, 25-26 Nov)
  • course on effective worker representation in the supply chain (London, 25 Nov)
Details of these and other events further in the future can be found here.  Please send relevant event information to Alex Janczenia:  
Current vacancies: Further details and other recently posted jobs available here.  Please send job announcements to Alex Janczenia:  
Hemos lanzado nuestro boletín de Actualizaciones Semanales totalmente en español - haz clic abajo en "update subscription preferences" para suscribirte
Nous avons lancé la version en français de nos « Actualités Hebdomadaires » - Cliquez sur « update subscription preferences » au bas de ce mail pour y souscrire
We take no position on views by commentators, organizations & companies in the materials in this email:
Copyright © 2015 Business & Human Rights Resource Centre, All rights reserved.

unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences