German G20 Presidency: Civil society calls for higher priority of human rights protection in intl. supply chains

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Article
24 March 2017

UN Working Group on business & human rights recommends for G20 to call on govts. & businesses to implement UN Guiding Principles

Author: UN Working Group on business & human rights

"To the members of the G20 Employment Working Group", 24. Mar 2017

It is encouraging to see that the 2017 G20 Employment Working Group has chosen the promotion of sustainable global supply chains as one of its main focus areas... In annex to this letter we make a number of recommendations on how to advance sustainable supply chains. In brief, the G20 should call on governments and businesses to implement the UN Guiding Principles. Key steps that governments should take include: Ensure policy coherence and alignment with the Guiding Principles in multilateral institutions that shape global supply chains; Implement the Guiding Principles through national action plans; Lead by example in their roles as economic actors, including to ensure that business enterprises that are State-owned or controlled respect human rights; Set out clearly the expectation that all business enterprises respect human rights throughout their operations, including by promoting effective human rights due diligence in supply chains through regulatory and policy measures; Implement the “access to remedy” pillar of the Guiding Principles; Address the threat faced by a range of human rights defenders who speak up against human rights risks and impacts associated with global supply chains.

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Article
23 March 2017

Civil society recommendations to G20 highlight transparency & responsible business conduct

Author: Civil 20

"Civil Society Recommendations to the G20"

The G20 countries must reaffirm their commitment to Agenda 2030 by taking concrete steps to drive responsibility and accountability of the private sector towards the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to mitigate climate change and increase social health, security, development, and inclusive economic stability. Investment flows and finance, both private and public, must be coherent with sustainable economies and business conduct. Investment towards public infrastructure must be coherent with sustainable development and guarantee that private returns are not prioritized over the public interest...

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Article
23 March 2017

NGOs submit policy recommendations on business & human rights to G20 Employment Working Group

Author: coordinated by Intl. Corporate Accountability Roundtable

"G7/G20 BHR Task Force submit letter to G20 Employment Working Group", 23 Mar 2017

The G7/G20 Business and Human Rights (BHR) Task Force has submitted a letter to the G20 Employment Working Group (EWG), providing key policy recommendations in relation to sustainable global supply chains... As challenges to the current economic world order continue to mount across the world, it is imperative for G20 countries to demonstrate how globalization can work for all. The current global economy depends heavily on the use and functioning of global supply chains. However, in order for these supply chains to help further global economic and social development, they must be sustainable—meaning they adhere to fundamental labor, social, governance, and environmental standards. By taking concrete steps to drive responsibility and accountability within global supply chains, G20 countries will make important gains in relation to targets under the Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development and will improve the lives of workers globally...

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Article
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Author: Human Rights Watch

.. Der diesjährige G20-Gipfel und das ihm vorausgehende Treffen der Arbeitsminister sind wichtige Gelegenheiten, das politische Bekenntnis der G20-Staaten zum Schutz der Menschenrechte innerhalb der globalen Lieferketten zu untermauern. Wir [Human Rights Watch] glauben, dass die deutsche G20-Präsidentschaft und insbesondere auch Ihr Ministerium [Bundesministerium für Arbeit und Soziales] eine Schlüsselrolle bei der Formulierung einer starken Agenda im Hinblick auf globale Lieferketten spielen können. In dieser Frage kann Deutschland an seine Führungsrolle bei den G7 und innerhalb der Internationalen Arbeitsorganisation anknüpfen. Deshalb wenden wir uns mit Empfehlungen für die Erklärung der Arbeitsminister und für die G20-Abschlusserklärung an Sie... 

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Article
16 March 2017

Human Rights Watch issues recommendations to German Govt. & G20 on human rights in global supply chains

Author: Human Rights Watch

"G20: Recommendations to the German government on human rights in global supply chains", 16 Mar 2017

In the context of the upcoming G20 Summit, Human Rights Watch therefore urges you to include robust commitments towards human rights due diligence in the draft Ministerial Declaration that you will be preparing and reviewing at the Employment Working Group meeting on 27-28 March in Geneva. We are also urging you to ensure that such commitments are fully included in the final G20 Declaration. In particular, we are recommending that: G20 governments commit to making human rights due diligence in global supply chains a legal requirement for companies...G20 governments commit to legally requiring companies to publicly disclose their suppliers and report publicly on human rights due diligence...G20 governments commit to making independent grievance mechanisms and remedy available and accessible for workers in global supply chains...G20 governments commit to promoting and protecting space for civil society, trade unions, and communities to expose and demand an end to human rights violations in the context of global supply chains...

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Article
10 March 2017

G20 must ensure safe & sustainable infrastructure investment agenda, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights says

Author: Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, in Miami Herald (USA)

"Human rights trampled in push to build infrastructure", 3 Mar 2017

One year ago, we awoke to the shocking news of the murder in Honduras of Berta Cáceres, recipient of the 2015 Goldman environmental prize, in response to her campaign to stop the Agua Zarca...dam. Cáceres had received more than 30 death threats...Foreign backers of the...dam...suspended lending. But threats to those opposing development projects have never been higher...In addition to murder, the tools of repression include curbs on peaceful assembly, clampdowns on non-governmental organizations, attacks on independent media, draconian anti-terror laws, state-sponsored vilification,...[F]inance ministers of...G20...have been working to increase global investment in mega-infrastructure projects... Infrastructure...is vital for the realisation of many human rights...and for economic growth. Growth, in turn, generates resources which can be harnessed for investments in people and the environment. But [these]...plans are laden with un-assessed human rights risk... In the macho world of mega-infrastructure, success is measured by size and speed, breeding the denial of human rights rather than due diligence... [T]he...narrative seems to be that you need to break a few eggs to make an omelette. [T]he president of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank has reportedly described people resisting forced resettlement as “irrational”...The possibility of human-rights-compliant resettlement seems irrelevant to this world view. The G20 and development financing institutions must urgently correct the course. It is time to lift the veil on regional and national infrastructure plans...[and] for a safe [and] sustainable infrastructure investment agenda.

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Article
3 January 2017

Addressing "shrinking civic space" will be top demand by civil society to G20 in 2017

Author: C20 Secretariat

"Shrinking Space is Top Concern of Civil Society", 3 Jan 2017

Preserving and expanding the political space for civil society in monitoring sustainable development is the top concern of civil society organisations worldwide, according to an online consultation by Civil20 (C20). More than 60% voted for the issue “the role of civil society and participation” to express the concern that civil society space is shrinking in many regions of the world, including in well-established democracies and G20 member countries. Thus, this will become a top demand by the C20 and a cross-cutting issue for the working groups. Through an online survey, participants were asked to vote for which issues they wanted to see the G20 take action on in 2017. People from 56 countries took part...representing almost 300 organisations from all parts of civil society and from all over the world...[Civil society] positions will be presented to the G20 Sherpas at the Sherpa Meeting on 23-24 March 2017. They will also be taken up in the C20 Communiqué that will be enacted at the C20 Summit on 18-19 June 2017 in Hamburg.

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