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Weekly Update - 21 October 2015

Lead Story
“There is No Time Left": Video report on human rights impacts of climate change, dam & agriculture projects on Turkana people in Kenya

Human Rights Watch

  • refers to impacts on health, ability to access food & water
  • calls on donor agencies to only approve projects after assessing human rights risks & putting in place measures to mitigate impacts; recommends govts. to adopt climate change policies based on human rights standards
(Photo: Oxfam East Africa/Flickr)
Asia & Pacific
Europe & Central Asia
Middle East & North Africa
From us

From Business & Human Rights Resource Centre
"The bottom line: UK corporate abuse overseas" - report illustrates accountability gap

CORE Coalition; with case studies provided by Business & Human Rights Resource Centre

Video: What can business do for climate justice?
  • representatives from Institute for Human Rights and Business, General Mills, EarthRights Intl., UN Development Programme & others share their views
Latest additions to our Climate Dialogues blog series: Latest additions to our Debate the Treaty blog series: How are companies responding to the refugee crisis in Europe?
 Spotlight on UN Forum: Parallel event concept notes now online; registration closes 1 Nov  Report by UN Special Rapporteur on human rights defenders highlights risks faced by advocates working on land, environment & corporate responsibility 81 companies sign pledge to act on climate change & to support "a strong outcome" for Paris climate negotiations; pledge initiated by US White House

Financial Times (UK)

New guide: "5 Steps towards managing the human rights impacts of your business"

twentyfifity & German Global Compact Network

Insights from consultations in Africa & Asia on Natl. Action Plans (NAPs)

Centre for Applied Legal Studies & Singapore Management Univ. Coalition on NAPs for Business and Human Rights

Zambia: ActionAid report says women "bear the brunt of the harmful impact of mining", especially on health, livelihoods

ActionAid Zambia; Business Day (So. Africa)

  • we invited Glencore (majority owner of Mopani mine) to respond; response provided
Gamma surveillance technology allegedly used to suppress opponents of Ugandan President

BBC Newsnight (UK)

Uganda: NGO representative calls for social impact assessments to protect communities displaced by oil infrastructure

Doris Atwijukire, Africa Institute for Energy Governance, in New Vision (Uganda)

Brazil: Biofuel & sugar companies accused of buying sugar from ranchers who violently evict indigenous groups

Grist (USA)

  • we invited the companies to respond: Biosev, Bunge and Cargill responses provided; we will indicate whether Alcoolvale/Unialco responds in a future Update
Colombia: Environmental defenders opposed to AngloGold Ashanti's mining allege receiving death threats from right-wing paramilitaries

Red de Justicia Ambiental del Tolima

  • we invited AngloGold Ashanti to respond; response provided
Guatemala: Reparations paid to families of victims of 1980s massacres during construction of Chixoy Dam

Intl. Rivers

  • dam financed by World Bank & Inter-American Development Bank
Mexico: Kia Motors agrees to implement UN Guiding Principles to protect workers' rights

Human Rights Commission of Nuevo Leon (Mexico)

Asia & Pacific
India: Women plantation workers in Kerala organise to call for fair wages & secure return of 20% bonus

BBC; Hindu; Frontline; Financial Express (India)

  • women work for Kanan Devan Hill Plantations (KDHP) - part-owned by Tata, owner of Tetley Tea
India: Report alleges Bayer & Syngenta failed to adequately inform farmers about dangers of pesticides; also refers to CropLife

European Centre for Constitutional & Human Rights (ECCHR)

  • CropLife & Syngenta issued statements in response to the report
  • we invited Bayer to respond as well; response provided
Bangladesh: NGOs allege H&M falling short on commitments to make fire & building safety repairs

Clean Clothes Campaign, Intl. Labor Rights Forum, Maquila Solidarity Network, Worker Rights Consortium

  • we invited H&M to respond; response provided
Indonesia: UN expert committee urges govt. to respect Aru Islanders' land rights threatened by sugar plantation

Forest Peoples Programme

India: Child labour reported in mica supply chains; companies insist their suppliers follow good practices


  • we invited Revlon to respond; response provided
China: Worker activists in Guangdong seek effective ways to counter reprisals

China Labour Bulletin

Europe & Central Asia
Armenia: Village resident raises concerns about environmental & health impacts, lack of information regarding Baktek-Eco plans to use cyanide in Arjout gold mine

Hetq online (Armenia)

Commentary: "How can companies go beyond donations to support refugees in Europe?"

Eniko Horvath, Business & Human Rights Resource Centre, in Huffington Post (UK)

Middle East & North Africa
Report highlights violations against migrant workers in Dubai's tourism sector

Swedwatch & Fair Action

Swiss OECD Natl. Contact Point accepts complaint against FIFA over alleged failure to address rights abuses against migrant construction workers in Qatar

Building and Wood Worker's Intl.; Swiss OECD Natl. Contact Point

Algeria: Visit by ILO Director General considered "missed opportunity" to call for freedom of association
  • EuroMed Rights statement highlights ongoing intimidation of independent unions SNAPAP and CGATA
Company responses Non-responses
Reminder: Registration for UN Forum on Business and Human Rights open until 1 Nov

Registration open: Multistakeholder consultation on Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights' Accountability and Remedy Project (Geneva, 19-20 Nov)
Forthcoming events:
  • webinar on business action in response to refugee crisis (online, 22 Oct)
  • impacts of natural resource extraction on women's rights (London, 26 Oct)
  • "Peoples' Forum on Human Rights and Business 2015" (Nairobi, 26-30 Oct)
  • "India Responsible Business Forum" (New Delhi, 27 Oct)
  • workshop on implementing the UN Guiding Principles (Kuala Lumpur, 29 Oct)
  • panel discussion on human rights risk in the supply chain (Sydney, 29 Oct)
Details of these and other events further in the future can be found here.  Please send relevant event information to Alex Janczenia:  
Communications Internship at Business & Human Rights Resource Centre - deadline 15 Nov

Other current vacancies Further details and other recently posted jobs available here.  Please send job announcements to Alex Janczenia:  
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