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

Weekly Update - 3 September 2014

Lead Story
Commentary: Business & human rights standards fail indigenous peoples in Bolivia & Chile

Business & Human Rights Resource Centre, in openGlobalRights - observations from this blog are based on a mission we carried out to Bolivia and Chile in July 2014

Thailand: Public support for activist Andy Hall grows - trial for case filed by Natural Fruit started on 2 Sept.
  • response from Andy Hall to Thai Pineapple Industry Association provided (in English & Thai)
  • public petitions by SumofUs, LabourStart, Walk Free
  • Business Social Compliance Initiative and Ethical Trade Initiative join calls to drop charges
Asia & Pacific
Europe & Central Asia
Middle East & North Africa

Reprieve submits complaint against G4S to UK OECD National Contact Point after company accepts Guantanamo contract - includes company comments

Independent (UK)

  • Reprieve says G4S work at Guantanamo might "contribute to ongoing human rights violations" at prison
The Social License - A new book by John Morrison, Executive Director of the Institute for Human Rights and Business
  • see details about where to buy book & endorsements
  • reserve a place at 29 Sep public panel discussion in London, hosted by Amnesty Intl. on issues arising from book 
Submissions to the UN Working Group's consultation on Natl. Action Plans on business & human rights
  • submissions by International Corporate Accountability Roundtable, Danish Institute for Human Rights, International Organisation of Employers & others
US court dismisses lawsuit against Ford & IBM alleging complicity in So. African apartheid abuses


  • Khulumani was one of the original plaintiffs (the litigation is a consolidation of several lawsuits)
  • also provided: case profile of lawsuit
Unilever & World Resources Institute partner to help combat deforestation through supply chain transparency
  • highlight repercussions on climate, local livelihoods
ILO: Work-related hazards, diseases claim 2.3 million lives annually

Intl. Tourism Partnership develops guidance materials to help hoteliers understand & address trafficking


Summary of stakeholder views during Nestlé roundtable on human rights & rural development
So. Africa: Report alleges tax avoidance by diamond mining companies & singles out De Beers as "main beneficiary of a system tilted in industry’s favour"

allAfrica; 100Reporters; Leverhulme Centre for Study of Value

  • Briggs Bomba of TrustAfrica says illicit capital outflows deprive poor countries of revenues that could be used to "fight poverty, build infrastructure, improve livelihoods"
  • we invited De Beers to respond; response provided
Malawi: Report by Catholic group calls for adequate compensation for victims of mining-related displacement

Mining in Malawi

Brazilian Ministry of Labour sues Biocom (part of Odebrecht) over alleged human rights abuses in Angola - company denies allegations

UOL (Brazil)

  • only in Portuguese: Angola: Ações trabalhistas contra a Biocom, filial da Odebrecht, apontam supostos abusos de direitos humanos; a empresa nega
Mega-public-private partnerships for agricultural projects in Africa could threaten small-scale farmers' livelihoods, says Oxfam official

Inter Press Service

Nigeria: Bus company LAGBUS recruits and trains its first ever cohort of female drivers

Guardian (Nigeria)

USA: Fast food workers plan largest strike to date for living wages & better health care

Guardian (UK)

  • includes workers from Burger King, McDonald’s, Pizza Hut & other chains
Nicaragua: Community protests new permits for B2Gold mining projects due to concern about impacts on their livelihoods

International Allies Coalition Against Mining in El Salvador

  • we invited B2Gold to respond - response provided
Peru: NGOs denounce delays in precautionary measures requested by Inter-American Commission on Human Rights for victims of Doe Run pollution

AIDA Americas

  • measures requested from govt. include medical care & environmental controls
Venezuela: Illegal gold mining boom linked to huge increase in malaria infections

BBC Mundo

Brazil: Logging & agricultural business interests linked to violence, including killings, in rural areas


  • only in Portuguese: Brasil: Debate acerca de abusos de direitos humanos por empresas e sua relação com a violência no campo
Brazil: Food company BRF, owner of Sadia & Perdigão brands, found guilty of degrading working conditions "analogous to slavery"

InfoMoney (Brazil)

  • only in Portuguese: Brasil: BRF, dona da Sadia e Perdigão, condenada por condições degradantes de trabalho
L'Oreal first US company awarded Economic Dividends for Gender Equality (EDGE) certification


  • researchers question the value of certifications, including EDGE
Asia & Pacific
China adopts legislation imposing harsher punishments on companies & managers responsible for safety breaches


Myanmar: Gap’s voluntary report to US Govt. reveals rights issues in suppliers’ factories, cites measures taken to address them

Irrawady (Myanmar)

Malaysia: Riot in JCY Intl. factory highlights poor living & working conditions of migrant workers - company denies allegations

Reuters; Star (Malaysia)

  • 42 arrested in riot - workers accuse company of negligence after death of an employer
India: Villagers dispute Vedanta's claim that public hearing supported expansion of Lanjigarh refinery

Survival International; Caravan (India)

  • we invited Vedanta to respond - response provided
India: Analysis of how proposed amendments to Factories Act impact female workers

Economic & Political Weekly (India)

India: Factory owner faces criminal charges for death of worker alleged to have been bonded labourer

Times of India

Further to our 13 Aug Update: IndustriALL Global Union submits rejoinder to NXP Semiconductors' 11 Aug response re allegations of anti-union activity in Philippines
  • we invited NXP to respond to the rejoinder - response provided
Europe & Central Asia
UN Working Group statement following Azerbaijan visit
  • also provided: commentaries by Access, International Service for Human Rights
UK: Anti-fracking protesters claim Cuadrilla's legal action against them is an attempt to inhibit their "right to protest in the future" - includes company comments

Blue & Green Tomorrow

UK: Report alleges Nando's chicken franchise uses complex structure to avoid taxes - includes video & company statement

Guardian (UK)

CORE submission to UK Parliamentary Joint Committee on Human Rights re Modern Slavery Bill

"Who bears the cost of cheap food?" - Fiona Gooch of Traidcraft on Ethical Trading Initiative blog
  • analyses how responsible purchasing by UK companies can improve working conditions & standard of living for farmers & workers
Middle East & North Africa
Further to last week's Update: Deva Holding/EastPharma has not responded to allegations of union busting in Turkey

IndustriALL; Intl. Federation of Chemical, Energy, Mine and General Workers' Unions

Further to last week's Update: Schleifring Systems declines to respond to allegations it has profited from Palestinian deaths in Gaza
  • Selex Galileo (part of Finmeccanica Group) response provided
Concerns satellite firms Intelsat & Eutelsat could be implicated in rights abuses after they return to operate in Iran

Wall Street Journal (USA)

  • includes company comments
Turkey: Syrian refugee crisis triggers child labour boom in Turkey

Guardian (UK)

  • UNICEF report estimates that 1 in 10 Syrian refugee children is working
Company responses Non-responses
Business & Human Rights Resource Centre is seeking an intern for its New York office
Forthcoming events:
  • European Society of International Law workshop on business & human rights (Vienna, 3 Sep)
  • seminar on transparency and good governance (Melbourne, 4 Sep)
  • due diligence in the private security industry - webinar (9 Sep)
  • corporations, global food system and human rights (Oslo, 11-12 Sep)
  • human trafficking, human rights and business - webinar (16 Sep)
  • "African Regional Forum on Business and Human Rights" (Addis Ababa, 16 Sep)
  • workshop: practical guide to business and human rights (London, 17 Sep)
  • conference on CSR & the legal profession (London,18-19 Sep)
  • course on implementation of United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights by businesses (Frankfurt, 23 Sep)
  • gender equality, human rights and business - webinar (24 Sep)
  • business engagement workshop on IPCC Fifth Assessment Report (Washington DC, 25 Sep) 
  • training course on stakeholder engagement (Frankfurt, 25 Sep)
  • "14th Conflict-Free Sourcing Initiative Workshop" (San Francisco, 29-30 Sep)
  • conference on preventing corporate/community conflict (Barcelona, 1-3 Oct)
  • "Responsible Electronics 2014" (Burlingame, 1-2 Oct)
Details of these and future events can be found here.  Please send relevant event information to Sam Whannel:
Current vacancies: Further details and other recently posted jobs available here.  Please send job announcements to Sam Whannel:
Perú: ONG dicen que tras 7 años el gobierno ha incumplido las medidas cautelares ordenadas por la Comisión Interamericana en beneficio de afectados por contaminación de Doe Run en La Oroya


Nicaragua: Comunidades protestan contra licencias de explotación minera de B2Gold y dicen que fueron reprimidos por la policía

Centro Humboldt (Nicaragua)

  • Nosotros invitamos a la empresa a responder - la respuesta está disponible en inglés
Organizaciones campesinas demandan restitución de tierras en Paraguay y Guatemala “despojadas de forma ilegal y con violencia”


Colombia: Empresas privadas de seguridad cuestionadas por ONG por pago de sobornos en programa de protección a defensores de derechos humanos

El Tiempo; Coordinación Colombia-Europa Estados Unidos

Argentina: Vídeo sobre impactos sociales y ambientales de la extracción de oro

Pablo D’Alo Abba & Cristian Harbaruk

Argentina: Trabajadores denuncian la “complicidad empresarial durante la dictadura”

El Tiempo de San Juan (Argentina)

Costa Rica: El Gobierno cuestiona la competencia del Centro Internacional de Arreglo de Diferencias Relativas a Inversiones (CIADI) del Banco Mundial en demanda de Infinito Gold por impactos ambientales

El País (Costa Rica)

Venezuela: Estatal petrolera PDVSA participa en proyecto de vivienda popular

Agencia Venezolana de Noticias

Nicaragua: Veinte mineros rescatados tras derrumbe en mina de Hemco (parte de Mineros SA)


Philippines : NXP, un fournisseur d'Apple, accusé de violations des droits syndicaux


  • Nous avons invité Apple et NXP à répondre aux accusations. NXP y a répondu (seulement en anglais). Apple n'y a pas répondu.
Niger: Des ONG dénoncent le blocage noté dans le renouvellement de la convention d'exploitation des mines d'Areva depuis la signature de l'accord cadre

La Dernière Heure (Belgique)

La Confédération générale des entreprises de Côte d’Ivoire sensibilise le secteur privé sur les risques liés au virus Ebola (Côte d'Ivoire)

Ecobank soutient la lutte contre la fièvre Ebola en Sierra Leone et dans les autres pays affectés

Financial Afrik (Mauritanie)

Business & Human Rights Resource Centre takes no position on the views presented by commentators, organisations and companies in the materials listed in this email or linked to in our website. As with any library, our purpose is to provide access to a wide selection of materials representing diverse viewpoints on matters of public interest. We do not exercise any editorial control over the materials and do not vouch for their accuracy.

You received this email because you are registered on our weekly updates list. To stop receiving updates from us or to change the format of the update, visit this webpage.


The Business & Human Rights Resource Centre website is the world's largest online library on the subject. We are an independent, non-political, non-profit organisation promoting greater awareness of issues relating to business and human rights.

The items in our updates and library represent diverse viewpoints. We welcome your comments, clarifications or responses.

Para obtener mayor información en español acerca del Centro de Información sobre Empresas y Derechos Humanos, y para leer nuestro descargo de responsabilidad, diríjase acá.

Usted ha recibido este email porque se ha registrado en nuestra lista de suscripciones al servicio de actualizaciones semanales. Para cancelar su suscripción, visite esta pagina web.

Pour plus d'informations au sujet de Centre de Ressources sur les Entreprises et les Droits de L'Homme en français, et pour lire notre avertissement, rendez-vous ici.

Vous recevez cet email parce que vous êtes inscrit sur notre liste de diffusion hebdomadaire. Pour cesser de recevoir des emails de notre part, rendez-vous sur cette page web.
Copyright © 2014 Business & Human Rights Resource Centre, All rights reserved.

unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences