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Monday, November 29
 

9:00am CET

Presenting a roadmap for the next decade of the UN Guiding Principles
A RECORDING OF THIS SESSION IS AVAILABLE HERE.

About this session
In this session, the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights will present its UNGPs 10+ Roadmap for the Next Decade of Business and Human Rights, with recommendations on how to scale up implementation of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs).

The session will feature:
  • A presentation of action areas and priority goals set out in the Working Group’s UNGPs 10+ Roadmap for the next decade of UNGPs implementation.
  • A discussion between the Working Group and representatives from OHCHR, OECD, ILO, UNDP and UN Global Compact on follow-up to the recommendations for the road ahead.

Background
As the UNGPs turned 10 in June 2021, the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights, as part of its mandate to promote the UNGPs, took stock of the first decade of implementation. The stocktaking highlighted that the UNGPs have led to significant progress by providing a common framework for all stakeholders in managing business-related human rights risks and impacts, but that considerable implementation and coherence challenges remain. As follow-on from the stocktaking, the Working Group developed its UNGPs 10+ Roadmap for the Next Decade with forward-looking recommendations for the next ten years. Building on the stocktaking’s analysis of achievements to date and existing challenges and opportunities, it sets out key action areas for the road ahead for progressively getting closer to fuller UNGPs realization. Each action area identifies priority goals and supporting actions to be taken by States and businesses as well as others that play a role in realizing UNGPs implementation.

The stocktaking and the Roadmap are results of the Working Group’s UNGPs 10+ project, which has been supported by a wider-ranging multi-stakeholder consultation process, numerous written inputs and collaboration with partners, including the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) and UNDP.

Read the Roadmap: ohchr.org/ungps10plusroadmap

UNGPs 10th anniversary page: https://www.ohchr.org/ungps10
#UNForumBHR / #bizhumanrights / #UNGPs10plus / #nextdecadeBHR / @ungps10plus



Speakers
avatar for Mr Surya Deva

Mr Surya Deva

Chair, UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights
Mr. Surya Deva is a Professor at the Macquarie Law School, University of Macquarie, Sydney. He researches in the areas of business and human rights, India-China constitutional law, international human rights law, and sustainable development. Deva has published extensively in these... Read More →
avatar for Anita Ramasastry

Anita Ramasastry

Member, Working Group on Business and Human Rights
Ms. Anita Ramasastry is the Roland L. Hjorth Professor of Law and the Director of the Graduate Program in Sustainable International Development at the University of Washington School Of Law. She researches and teaches in the fields of law and development, anti-corruption, international... Read More →
avatar for Dante Pesce

Dante Pesce

Founder and Executive Director, Vincular Center for Social Responsibility and Sustainable Development
Mr. Dante Pesce was a member of the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights 2015-2021.Mr. Pesce holds a Masters in Political Science from the Catholic University of Chile and a Masters in Public Administration from Harvard University. He is the Founder and Executive Director... Read More →
avatar for Sanda Ojiambo

Sanda Ojiambo

CEO & Executive Director, UN Global Compact
Sanda Ojiambo of Kenya was appointed CEO & Executive Director of the United Nations Global Compact by UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres in June 2020.As the world grappled with the COVID-19 pandemic, Ms. Ojiambo launched an ambitious new UN Global Compact strategy to accelerate... Read More →
avatar for Lene Wendland

Lene Wendland

Chief Business and Human Rights, OHCHR
Lene Wendland is Chief of the Business and Human Rights Unit in UN Human Rights and leads UN Human Rights’ thematic work on business and human rights. She was part of the team of former Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General on Business and Human Rights, Professor John... Read More →
avatar for Githa Roelans

Githa Roelans

Head of the Multinational Enterprises and Enterprise Engagement Unit, International Labour Organisation (ILO)
Githa Roelans is the Head of the Multinational Enterprises and Enterprise Engagement Unit since 2013. The unit provides policy advice and technical assistance to governments, employers and workers in ILO member States on the application of the ILO Tripartite Declaration concerning... Read More →
avatar for Allan Jorgensen

Allan Jorgensen

Head of the OECD Centre for Responsible Business Conduct, OECD
Mr Allan Jorgensen has two decades of experience as a sustainability leader in both the private and public sectors. He joined the OECD in January 2021 from Danish logistics giant A.P. Moller-Maersk where as Head of Sustainable Trade, he has led the company's work on inclusive trade... Read More →
avatar for Livio Sarandrea

Livio Sarandrea

Global Adviser, Business and Human Rights, UNDP
Mr. Livio Sarandrea, is UNDP’s Global Lead on Business and Human Rights and the Team leader of: “Business and Human Rights in Asia promoting Responsible Business practices through regional partnerships (B+HR Asia)”. A Human Rights lawyer with 20 years of field experience in... Read More →



Monday November 29, 2021 9:00am - 10:15am CET
Virtual Plenary room

10:25am CET

Gender mainstreaming in the business and human rights field
 A RECORDING OF THIS SESSION IS AVAILABLE HERE.

Interpretation will be available in English, French and Spanish

Brief description of the session:
In June 2019, the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights issued Gender Guidance for the Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (A/HRC/41/43) to assist States, businesses and other actors in integrating a gender perspective in implementing the UNGPs. The Gender Guidance complements the Standards of Conduct for Business: Tackling Discrimination against Lesbian, Gay, Bi, Trans, & Intersex People issued by the OHCHR in September 2017. On 25 June 2021, the ILO’s Violence and Harassment Convention 2019 came into force. Despite these standards, men and women (including boys and girls) as well as non-binary people continue to face multiple forms of intersectional discrimination, exclusion and violence in all spheres of life.

This session aims to bring together representatives of various stakeholders to discuss strategies on mainstreaming an intersectional gender perspective across all issues in the business and human rights field, such as access to remedy, care work, climate change, conflicts, corporate leaderships, corruption, COVID-19, disability, discrimination, free prior and informed consent, gender-based violence, gender pay gap, human rights defenders, human rights due diligence, human trafficking, inequality, LGBTI+ rights, modern slavery, national action plans, new technologies, public procurement, racism, sexual harassment, supply chains, sustainable development, tax evasion, and trade and investment agreements. This discussion will also contribute to integrating a gender perspective as a cross-cutting issue in operationalising the Working Group’s “roadmap” for implementation in the next decade as part of the UNGPs 10+ project and in turn achieving substantial gender equality.

Key objectives of the session:
The session aims to:
  • Highlight the importance of gender mainstreaming in the business and human rights field;
  • Explore strategies and tools needed to integrate an intersectional gender perspective in all policies, programmes and decisions of international organisations, governments, business enterprises, civil society organisations and other actors.
  • Discuss gender-responsive measures as part of “building back better” to overcome disproportionate impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on girls, women and LGBTI+ people.   

Key discussion questions:
  • How to integrate an intersectional gender approach in all business and human rights issues?
  • What is the role of various actors such as States, national human rights institutions, businesses, industry associations, trade unions, civil society organisations, human rights defenders, academia, lawyers, and women organisations in gender mainstreaming? 
  • How to avoid risks of adopting a siloed or tick-box approach to gender in the business and human rights field?
  • How to ensure an active participation of women, girls and LGBTI+ people in decision making processes and strategies aimed at building back better and contributing to achieving substantive gender equality?  

Background documents and relevant links:
  • Women's Empowerment Principles (WEPs)

Moderators
avatar for Mr Surya Deva

Mr Surya Deva

Chair, UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights
Mr. Surya Deva is a Professor at the Macquarie Law School, University of Macquarie, Sydney. He researches in the areas of business and human rights, India-China constitutional law, international human rights law, and sustainable development. Deva has published extensively in these... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Allana Kembabazi

Allana Kembabazi

Program Manager, Initiative for Social and Economic Rights
Ms. Allana Kembabazi is an expert on social economic rights and passionate about pro poor economic growth and development in Uganda. She is a Program Manager with  the Initiative for Social and Economic Rights (ISER), which uses research, advocacy, targeted litigation and community... Read More →
avatar for Fernanda Hopenhaym

Fernanda Hopenhaym

member, UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights
Ms. Fernanda Hopenhaym is Co-Executive Director at Project on Organizing, Development, Education and Research (PODER), an organization in Latin America dedicated to corporate accountability. Since 2006 Ms. Hopenhaym has been working on issues related to human rights and financial... Read More →
avatar for Tamara Mawhinney

Tamara Mawhinney

Deputy Permanent Representative of Canada to the United Nations in Geneva, Permanent Mission of Canada to the Office of the United Nations, Geneva
(BA Honours [History and Literature], Trinity College, University of Toronto, 1987; Certificat d'Études Politiques [European politics and Law], Institut d'Études Politiques, Paris, 1998; Bachelor of Laws, University of Toronto, 1991; Diplôme d'administration publique [French and... Read More →
avatar for Demet Ikiler

Demet Ikiler

CEO, GroupM EMEA
Vice President, Global Compact Network TurkeyCo-chair, Diversity and Inclusion Working Group, Global Compact Network TurkeyGroupM EMEA CEOCountry Manager, WPP TurkeyDemet Ikiler joined WPP group in 2000 to build Mindshare in Turkey. The agency experienced organic business growth over... Read More →
avatar for Debbie Stothard

Debbie Stothard

Coordinator/Founder, ALTSEAN
Grassroots-centered initiatives, youth activism. Women's leadership, atrocity prevention, BHR.
avatar for Nora Götzmann

Nora Götzmann

Chief Adviser, Danish Institute for Human Rights
I am Chief Adviser at the Danish Institute for Human Rights, focusing on business and human rights. I am also Adjunct Researcher at the Centre for Social Responsibility in Mining of the Sustainable Minerals Institute at the University of Queensland, Australia. I have 10+ years experience... Read More →



Monday November 29, 2021 10:25am - 11:40am CET
Virtual Plenary room

11:50am CET

Preventing and remediating climate harm: Who needs to do what?
A RECORDING OF THIS SESSION IS AVAILABLE HERE.

Session organized by the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights

Interpretation will be available in English, French and Spanish

Brief description of the session:
The session will highlight concrete rights-based actions that States, businesses, investors and other actors should take to prevent, mitigate and remediate the climate crisis. Various panellists will unpack the urgent steps that various actors should take in line with key international instruments such as the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs) as elaborated by the forthcoming Information Note developed by the Working Group on Business and Human Rights, and the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises. Ten years after the adoption of the Guiding Principles, the session will frame this discussion around how actors from different constituencies should act together to achieve rights-based just transition that give priority to people and the planet over profit.

Key objectives of the session:
The session aims to:
  • Discuss guidance on the how to implement UN Guiding Principles in the context of the climate crisis;
  • Underline the importance of meaningful and effective participation of people, including communities in vulnerable and marginalised situations, in developing policies, solutions and actions aimed at achieving just transition;
  • Highlight the linkages between States’ duty to protect human rights and rights-based climate action;
  • Unpack what the business responsibility to respect human rights entails in the context of the climate crisis; and
  • Articulate access to remedy for individuals and communities affected by climate change.  


Key questions:
  • How can the UNGPs inspire inclusive, rights-based climate action? What good practices could States, businesses and other actors such as civil society, national human rights institutions, academia and international organizations draw on?
  • What does the duty of States to protect human rights mean in the context of averting climate crisis?
  • How should business enterprises integrate climate considerations as part of their human rights responsibility to respect human rights throughout their operations, including as part of due diligence?
  • How can access to information, transparency and policy coherence be ensured, and what measures are needed to address corporate lobbying against measures aimed at mitigating climate change?
  • How can access to effective remedy for individuals and communities affected by climate change as well as the protection of environmental human rights defenders be ensured in recovery measures and beyond? What are existing challenges and opportunities?

Background to the discussion:
In a dedicated statement for UNFCCC COP26, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights called for “business models that are respectful of the environment and protect human rights” and noted that “Governments and other authorities, businesses and individuals have a shared responsibility to prevent, mitigate and remedy the negative human rights impacts of climate change.”

Preventing environmental harm is critical to ensure the full and effective implementation of fundamental human rights such as those to health, a healthy environment, and water and sanitation. All States have an obligation to pursue development that benefits both people and the planet and equitably distribute the benefits of economic growth. Businesses have a responsibility to respect human rights, including to integrate climate considerations into human rights due diligence processes.

Courts, non-judicial mechanisms such as National Contact Points as well as human rights mechanisms are increasingly being called on to interpret and apply the obligations of states and businesses in the context of climate change. In 2021, the EU Parliament approved a proposed outline for an EU Directive on Mandatory Human Rights, Environmental and Good Governance Due Diligence. In addition, the OECD has recently undertaken a stocktaking exercise seeking comments on its Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises, and the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights is developing guidance on the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights in the context of climate change.

Additional background documents:



Moderators
avatar for Tessa Khan

Tessa Khan

Director & Founder, Uplift
Tessa is an international climate change and human rights lawyer and campaigner. She is currently the Director and founder of Uplift, an organisation that supports a just transition away from fossil fuels in the UK. Previously, she was co-founder and Co-Director of the Climate Litigation... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Mr Surya Deva

Mr Surya Deva

Chair, UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights
Mr. Surya Deva is a Professor at the Macquarie Law School, University of Macquarie, Sydney. He researches in the areas of business and human rights, India-China constitutional law, international human rights law, and sustainable development. Deva has published extensively in these... Read More →
avatar for Jenny Sandvig

Jenny Sandvig

Policy Director, Norway's National Human Rights Institution
Jenny Sandvig is a Policy Director at the Norwegian National Human Rights Institution (NHRI), responsible for their work on climate and human rights. In this capacity, Ms. Sandvig has led the work on a third-party intervention submitted on behalf of the European Network of National... Read More →
avatar for Sophie Marjanac

Sophie Marjanac

Senior Lawyer / Climate Accountability Lead, ClientEarth
Sophie Marjanac is an internationally recognised expert in climate change law and litigation, human rights and corporate management of climate risk. She leads our Climate Accountability Initative, which focusses on strategic litigation and other legal interventions to drive governments... Read More →
avatar for Caio Borges

Caio Borges

Portfolio Manager - Law and Climate, Institute for Climate and Society
Caio Borges leads the Law and Climate Portfolio at the Institute for Climate and Society, a philanthropic organization which supports projects and organizations in the field of climate change. He has more than ten years of experience with business and human rights, financial regulation... Read More →
avatar for Yann Wyss

Yann Wyss

Senior Manager, Social Impact, Nestlé
Yann Wyss joined Nestlé in 2011 as a human rights expert to develop and implement Nestlé’s Human Rights Due Diligence Program across the company’s operations and supply chain. He started his career in the Swiss Foreign Ministry, where he was actively involved in the creation... Read More →
avatar for Ruwan Subasinghe

Ruwan Subasinghe

Legal Director, International Transport Workers' Federation (ITF)
Ruwan Subasinghe is the Legal Director of the International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF). He specialises in labour, human rights and international law. Ruwan represents the ITF at external bodies including the International Labour Organization (ILO) and the Organization for... Read More →



Monday November 29, 2021 11:50am - 1:00pm CET
Virtual Plenary room

1:00pm CET

Special session: The legacy of UNGPs architect Prof. John Ruggie for the next decade and beyond
A RECORDING OF THIS SESSION IS AVAILABLE HERE.

This session is a tribute to Professor John G. Ruggie (1944-2021), author of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, who passed away on September 16, 2021.

During his mandate as Special Representative of the Secretary-General on Business and Human Rights (2005-2011), Prof. Ruggie led a highly inclusive process of comprehensive research and stakeholder engagement across all backgrounds and regions to develop a global framework for addressing risks to human rights and contributing to a more equitable and sustainable global economy. This work resulted in the ground-breaking UN “Protect, Respect and Remedy” framework and the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights.

The Guiding Principles were unanimously endorsed by the Human Rights Council in 2011. Since then, they have provided a pragmatic and normative common platform for various stakeholders – from businesses and governments to unions and civil society groups, and most importantly to affected people.

The annual Forum, another of Prof. Ruggie’s many legacies, has in his words served as “a global town hall meeting, where people from every region and every sector of society could come and share experiences with implementing the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, and identify what additional steps might need to be taken to strengthen the promotion and protection of human rights in relation to business activity.”

Taking place at the time of the 10th anniversary year of the Guiding Principles, the 2021 Forum will honour Prof. Ruggie's legacy and discuss what is needed to further make his vision a reality over the coming decade.

The session will feature reflections from leaders from different backgrounds who engaged with Prof. Ruggie during his work to develop the Guiding Principles and in later efforts to promote business respect for human rights.

Links and social media:

UNGPs 10th anniversary page (includes link to video statement by Prof. Ruggie): https://www.ohchr.org/ungps10

#UNForumBHR / #bizhumanrights / #UNGPs10plus / #nextdecadeBHR / @ungps10plus

Speakers
avatar for Anita Ramasastry

Anita Ramasastry

Member, Working Group on Business and Human Rights
Ms. Anita Ramasastry is the Roland L. Hjorth Professor of Law and the Director of the Graduate Program in Sustainable International Development at the University of Washington School Of Law. She researches and teaches in the fields of law and development, anti-corruption, international... Read More →
avatar for Mary Robinson

Mary Robinson

Chair, The Elders
Mary Robinson is Adjunct Professor for Climate Justice in Trinity College Dublin and Chair of The Elders.She served as President of Ireland from 1990-1997 and UN High Commissioner for Human Rights from 1997-2002. She is a member of the Club of Madrid and the recipient of numerous... Read More →
avatar for Guy Ryder

Guy Ryder

Director-General, International Labour Organization (ILO)
Guy Ryder, Director-General, International Labour Organization, was first elected in 2012 and started a second term of office in 2017. His vision is for an ILO that anticipates and responds effectively to 21st century realities, reaching the most vulnerable and remaining true to its... Read More →
avatar for Paul Polman

Paul Polman

Co-Founder and Chair, IMAGINE
Paul PolmanInfluencer, business leader, campaigner, Co-Author of “Net Positive: how courageous companies thrive by giving more than they take”, recently published October 2021.Paul Polman works to accelerate action by business to tackle climate change and inequality. A leading... Read More →
avatar for Sanda Ojiambo

Sanda Ojiambo

CEO & Executive Director, UN Global Compact
Sanda Ojiambo of Kenya was appointed CEO & Executive Director of the United Nations Global Compact by UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres in June 2020.As the world grappled with the COVID-19 pandemic, Ms. Ojiambo launched an ambitious new UN Global Compact strategy to accelerate... Read More →
avatar for Sharan Burrow

Sharan Burrow

General Secretary, International Trade Union Confederation
Sharan Burrow is General Secretary of the International Trade Union Confederation, representing 200 million workers in 163 countries and territories with 332 national affiliates. Previously President of the Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU) from 2000 – 2010, Sharan is a... Read More →
avatar for Alejandra Ancheita

Alejandra Ancheita

Founder and Executive Director, ProDESC
Alejandra Ancheita is a renowned human rights defender in Mexico. Founder and Executive Director of Proyecto de Derechos Económicos, Sociales y Culturales (ProDESC), Alejandra has more than 20 years’ experience defending and promoting Economic, Social and Cultural Rights of the... Read More →
VM

Viraf Mehta

Advisor, Partners in Change
AO

Austin Onuoha

Executive Director, Africa Center for Corporate Responsibility


Monday November 29, 2021 1:00pm - 2:00pm CET
Virtual Plenary room

2:00pm CET

Opening plenary
A RECORDING OF THIS SESSION IS AVAILABLE HERE.
 
Interpretation in English, French and Spanish will be available 


The annual Forum on Business and Human Rights is the UN’s platform for multi-stakeholder dialogue to assess the progress made by states and business in moving the three pillars of “Protect, Respect and Remedy” of the Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs) from paper to practice.
As the UNGPs turned 10 in June 2021, the convergence of the COVID-19 and climate crises, amid a number of other major global challenges, underlined why the need to bridge the gaps between actions of economic actors and respect for people and the planet is more pressing than ever.

Under the overall theme of “The next decade of business and human rights: increasing the pace and scale of action to implement the Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights”, the opening plenary will feature high profile speakers who will offer critical, original and creative thinking to inspire effective, human rights compliant action by governments and businesses to deliver durable solutions to global challenges.
Among the objectives, the speakers will examine several of the most urgent global challenges where the issues of human rights and the role of business intersect. A key aim of the opening plenary session is to provide leadership perspectives on what is required by States and businesses to implement their respective human rights duties and responsibilities in order to achieve real change in the next decade and beyond. A key goal is to deliver a strong and timely call for action, to provide inspiration and help set the tone for constructive and solution-oriented dialogue over the three Forum days.

Key references:
  • The “Road map” for the next decade of the UNGPs developed by the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights (UNWG) – to be launched at the Forum

Speakers
avatar for Michelle Bachelet

Michelle Bachelet

United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights
On September 1, 2018 Michelle Bachelet assumed her functions as the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights. The Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights was established in 1993 and Ms. Bachelet is the seventh Commissioner.Ms. Bachelet was elected President of Chile... Read More →
avatar for Nazhat Shameem Khan

Nazhat Shameem Khan

President of the Human Rights Council, Human Rights Council
avatar for Mr Surya Deva

Mr Surya Deva

Chair, UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights
Mr. Surya Deva is a Professor at the Macquarie Law School, University of Macquarie, Sydney. He researches in the areas of business and human rights, India-China constitutional law, international human rights law, and sustainable development. Deva has published extensively in these... Read More →
avatar for Phil Bloomer

Phil Bloomer

Executive Director, Business & Human Rights Resource Centre
Phil Bloomer is Executive Director of Business & Human Rights Resource Centre, a digital action platform that empowers human rights advocates in civil society, business, and government.The website attracts 4 million visits each year; tracks the human rights performance of over 9,000... Read More →
avatar for Usha Ramanathan

Usha Ramanathan

Human Rights Activist
Usha Ramanathan works on the jurisprudence of law, poverty and rights. She researches, writes and speaks on issues that include the nature of law, Bhopal Gas Disaster, mass displacement, eminent domain, manual scavenging, civil liberties including the death penalty, beggary, criminal... Read More →
MP

Melva Patricia Gualinga Montalvo

Asesora politica, Pueblo Originario Kichwa de Sarayaku
Lider Historica del Pueblo Sarayaku, ha luchado por los derechos indigenas y de la naturaleza, traductora y testigo en la Corte InterAmericana de derechos Humanos en el caso Sarayaku versus estado de ecuador. Ha ganado varios premios por su activismo en España, EEUU, Alemania.



Monday November 29, 2021 2:00pm - 3:00pm CET
Virtual Plenary room

3:10pm CET

A roadmap for the next decade: Time for Government action and coherence
A RECORDING OF THIS SESSION IS AVAILABLE HERE.

About this session
This session asks how to get closer to realizing full implementation of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs) over the next decade. It will feature statements by Government representatives on how to:
  • Increase the pace of UNGPs implementation over the next decade
  • Ensure follow-up of recommendations in the UNGPs 10+ Roadmap for the next decade of business and human rights

Background
As the UNGPs turned 10 in June 2021, the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights mandated by the Human Rights Council to promote dissemination and implementation of the UNGPs worldwide, took stock of the first decade of implementation.  The stocktaking highlighted that the UNGPs have led to significant progress by providing a common framework for all stakeholders in managing business-related human rights risks and impacts. Yet, considerable challenges remain when it comes to coherent implementation with respect to ensuring better protection and prevention of adverse human rights impacts, with particular attention to the most marginalized and vulnerable, and to ensuring access to remedy for harms that occur.

Following on from the stocktaking, the Working Group is launching its UNGPs 10+ Roadmap for the next decade, complementing the assessment of the first decade with forward-looking recommendations for the next one. Building on the stocktaking’s analysis of achievements to date and existing challenges and opportunities, it sets out key action areas for the road ahead and for progressively getting closer to fuller UNGPs realization. Each action area identifies priority goals for what needs to happen and supporting actions to be taken by States and businesses as well as other key stakeholders, all playing a role in realizing UNGPs implementation. Its ultimate objective echoes that of the UNGPs themselves, that they should be translated to practice so as to “achieve tangible results for affected individuals and communities, and thereby also contributing to a socially sustainable globalization.”

The stocktaking and the Roadmap are results of the Working Group’s UNGPs 10+ project, which has been supported by a wide-ranging multi-stakeholder consultation process.

The Working Group has identified eight action areas for moving faster and with greater ambition to support the overall urgent need for more coherent action. The Roadmap elaborates on the priority goals connected to each action areas, setting out what needs to happen over the next decade to scale up UNGPs integration and implementation and corresponding supporting actions to be taken by States and businesses, as well as other stakeholders.

Read the Roadmap here: ohchr.org/ungps10plusroadmap
The following States and regional organizations intervened in the session. Statements from other States are also posted on this page.
  • Belgium
  • Brazil
  • Colombia
  • Ecuador
  • EU
  • Finland
  • Germany
  • India
  • Indonesia
  • Kenya
  • Malaysia
  • Pakistan
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • Thailand
  • Uganda
  • UK
  • USA



Moderators
avatar for Mr Surya Deva

Mr Surya Deva

Chair, UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights
Mr. Surya Deva is a Professor at the Macquarie Law School, University of Macquarie, Sydney. He researches in the areas of business and human rights, India-China constitutional law, international human rights law, and sustainable development. Deva has published extensively in these... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Fernanda Hopenhaym

Fernanda Hopenhaym

member, UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights
Ms. Fernanda Hopenhaym is Co-Executive Director at Project on Organizing, Development, Education and Research (PODER), an organization in Latin America dedicated to corporate accountability. Since 2006 Ms. Hopenhaym has been working on issues related to human rights and financial... Read More →
avatar for Dante Pesce

Dante Pesce

Founder and Executive Director, Vincular Center for Social Responsibility and Sustainable Development
Mr. Dante Pesce was a member of the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights 2015-2021.Mr. Pesce holds a Masters in Political Science from the Catholic University of Chile and a Masters in Public Administration from Harvard University. He is the Founder and Executive Director... Read More →
RF

Rita French

Deputy Permanent Representative to the United Nations in Geneva and International Ambassador for Human Rights, United Kingdom
MA

Mualimin Abdi

Director General of Human Rights, Ministry of Law and Human Rights of the Republic of Indonesia, Indonesia
avatar for Herbert Borges Paes de Barros

Herbert Borges Paes de Barros

Director for Protection and Defense of Human Rights, Ministry of Women, Family and Human Rights, Brazil
SK

Senthil Kumar,

First Secretary, Permanent Mission of India, India
avatar for Nancy Patricia Gutierrez Castañeda

Nancy Patricia Gutierrez Castañeda

Consejera, Consejera Presidencial para los Derechos Humanos y Asuntos Internacionales
En virtud de su experiencia y liderazgo en temas de Derechos Humanos, Nancy Patricia Gutiérrez Castañeda, fue designada por el presidente, Iván Duque, como Consejera Presidencial para los Derechos Humanos y Asuntos Internacionales.Fue la primera mujer en la historia del país en... Read More →
RV

Rongvudhi Virabutr

Ambassador and Deputy Permanent Representative of Thailand, and Chargé d’affaires a.i., Thailand
avatar for Cecilia Ekholm

Cecilia Ekholm

Ambassador for Sustainable Business, Sweden
KS

Katharina Stasch

Ambassador, Permanent Representative to the UN in Geneva, Germany
avatar for Claris Kariuki-Mwirigi

Claris Kariuki-Mwirigi

Senior State Counsel, Office of the Attorney General & Department of Justice
DM

Diego Morejón

Undersecretary of Multilateral Affairs, Ecuador
IK

Inamullah Khan

Secretary, Ministry of Human Rights, Pakistan
SG

Simon Geissbühler

Ambassador, Assistant State Secretary at the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs, Switzerland
BM

Bernard Mujuni

Commissioner in charge of equity and rights, Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development, Uganda
GH

Guus Houttuin

Senior Adviser on Trade Issues, European External Action Service (EEAS), European Union
BM

Benjamin Moeling

Chargé d’Affaires, U.S. Mission, USA
MP

Marc Pecsteen de Buytswerve

Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the UN in Geneva, Belgium
TK

Tarja Kangaskorte

Director for the Unit for Human Rights Policy at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Finland, Finland



Monday November 29, 2021 3:10pm - 4:30pm CET
Virtual Plenary room

4:40pm CET

Indigenous peoples and the next decade of business and human rights
A RECORDING OF THIS SESSION IS AVAILABLE HERE.


Interpretation available in English, French and Spanish

Brief description of the session:
At the occasion of the tenth anniversary of the unanimous endorsement by the Human Rights Council of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, and drawing on the recently published stocktaking report of the UNWG on the implementation during the first decade and the roadmap for the next decade, this session will discuss key actions  suggested by the roadmap related to respect indigenous peoples rights in business-related context, and explore how they could be effectively put into practice. This discussion will also be informed by the report of IPRI and IWGIA on UNGPS and indigenous peoples: progress achieved, the implementation gap and challenges for the next decade, and the session on indigenous peoples of the regional forums ( including LAC )

Objectives of the session:
Discuss concrete ways to move from paper to practice and walk toward tangible implementation of the UNGPS and indigenous peoples for the next decade.

Relevant reading
- Report of the Special Rapporteur on rights of indigenous peoples on Impact of international investment and free trade on the human rights of indigenous peoples - A/70/301
- Report of the Special Rapporteur on rights of indigenous peoples on International investment agreements, including bilateral investment treaties and investment chapters of free trade agreements - A/HRC/33/42
-Report of IPRI and IWGIA on UNGPS and indigenous peoples: progress achieved, the implementation gap and challenges for the next decade
- Report of the Working Group on the issue of human rights and transnational corporations and other business enterprises: "Addressing the human rights impacts of agro-industrial operations on indigenous and local communities: State duties and responsibilities of business enterprises" - A/71/291


La próxima decada de las empresas y los derechos humanos y los pueblos indígenas

Breve resumen de la sesión:
Con motivo del décimo aniversario de la aprobación unánime por parte del Consejo de Derechos Humanos de los Principios Rectores de las Naciones Unidas sobre las Empresas y los Derechos Humanos, y basándose en el informe de evaluación recientemente publicado por el Grupo de Trabajo de las Naciones Unidas sobre la aplicación durante la primera década y la hoja de ruta para la próxima década, en esta sesión se debatirán las acciones clave sugeridas por la hoja de ruta en relación con el respeto de los derechos de los pueblos indígenas en el contexto empresarial, y se explorará cómo podrían ponerse en práctica de manera efectiva. Este debate también se basará en el informe del IPRI y del IWGIA sobre los UNGPS y los pueblos indígenas: avances logrados, la brecha en la implementación y los desafíos para la próxima década, y la sesión sobre los pueblos indígenas de los foros regionales (incluyendo el foro regional de America Latina y el Caribe).

Objetivos de la sesión:
Discutir formas concretas de pasar del papel a la práctica y caminar hacia una implementación tangible de los UNGPS y los pueblos indígenas para la próxima década.

Lecturas relevantes
  •  Informe del Relator Especial sobre los derechos de los pueblos indígenas sobre el impacto de la inversión internacional y el libre comercio sobre los derechos humanos de los pueblos indígenas - A/70/301
  • Informe del Relator Especial sobre los derechos de los pueblos indígenas sobre A/HRC/33/42
  • Informe de IPRI and IWGIA sobre los UNGPS y los pueblos indígenas: avances logrados, brecha en la implementación y desafíos para la próxima década
  • Informe del Grupo de Trabajo sobre empresas y derechos humanos: "Abordar los impactos de las operaciones agroindustriales sobre los derechos humanos de las comunidades indígenas y locales: Deberes del Estado y responsabilidades de las empresas"- A/71/291

Moderators
avatar for Fernanda Hopenhaym

Fernanda Hopenhaym

member, UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights
Ms. Fernanda Hopenhaym is Co-Executive Director at Project on Organizing, Development, Education and Research (PODER), an organization in Latin America dedicated to corporate accountability. Since 2006 Ms. Hopenhaym has been working on issues related to human rights and financial... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Johannes Rohr

Johannes Rohr

Project manager, International Work Group on Indigenous Affairs
I am interested in improving access to effective remedies
avatar for Luis Vittor

Luis Vittor

Coordinadora Andina de Organizaciones Indígenas (CAOI)
avatar for Sheri Meyerhoffer

Sheri Meyerhoffer

Canada Ombudsman for Responsible Enterprise
avatar for Ikal Angelei

Ikal Angelei

Director, Friends of Lake Turkana
avatar for Prasad Vijaya Segaran

Prasad Vijaya Segaran

Human Rights & Social Standards Manager (Community Wellbeing & Gender), Roundtable for Sustainable Palm Oil
Prasad works closely with the Human Rights Working Group of the RSPO and facilitates projects and activities related to the Human Rights standards requirements and implementation; namely the Priniciples and Criteria, which is the global standard for Palm Oil producer members of the... Read More →



Monday November 29, 2021 4:40pm - 6:00pm CET
Virtual Plenary room
 
Tuesday, November 30
 

7:30am CET

Business and human rights: Youth as levers of change in Asia Pacific
Session organized by the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights and United Nations Development Programme B+HR Asia


Brief descrition of the session:
June 2021 marked the tenth anniversary of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs). Over the past few years, business and human rights (BHR) discourse has progressed significantly in Asia despite ongoing challenges. Most efforts to implement the UNGPs have so far targeted States and businesses, including through awareness-raising and capacity building. However, these efforts do not adequately include or engage with youth. This is a missed opportunity, as today the world is home to 1.8 billion young people, over half of which live in Asia, the largest generation of youth in history. Youth have the potential to galvanise support for responsible business conduct as consumers, investors, political activists, student leaders, lawyers, entrepreneurs, social media campaigners, human rights defenders, and future business executives. In fact, youth have already led on critical human rights issues such as climate change. They are also key to protect the interests and rights of the future generations.
Against this backdrop, this session seeks to discuss challenges and opportunities to the effective implementation of the UNGPs in Asia and explore how to harness the role of youth as “levers of change” in promoting responsible business conduct and holding corporate accountable for harm to people or the planet.

Objectivesof the session:
This session aims to:
  • Highlight challenges, opportunities and progress in the business and human field in Asia Pacific from the experiences of youth;
  • Explore the role of youth in contributing to effective implementation of the UNGPs;
  • Explore strategies aimed at engaging youth to promote responsible business conduct and corporate accountability in Asia Pacific; and
  • Discuss ways to connect the business and human rights agenda with youth-led social movements in Asia Pacific.

Discussion questions:
  • What are some of the key developments concerning the effective implementation of UNGPs in Asia Pacific?
  • What is the role of youth in overcoming challenges to the effective implementation of the UNGPs in the next decade?
  • What are the perspectives of youth pertaining to business and human rights and the role of business in achieving inclusive and sustainable development?
  • How can youth become levers of change in promoting business respect for human rights and corporate accountability?
  • What is the role of schools, universities and UN agencies in educating youth about BHR issues that will shape their future?

Background to the discussion:
The importance of youth in this respect is affirmed by the declaration on the commemoration of the seventy-fifth anniversary of the United Nations, as part of which States committed to the following: “We will listen to and work with youth. Youth is the missing piece for peace and development. As we benefited from the foresight of the founders of the United Nations, young people today will have to live with the consequences of our action and inaction. For too long, the voices of youth have been sidelined in discussions about their future. This has to change now through meaningful engagement with youth.”
Moreover, in his report “Our Common Agenda”, the UN Secretary-General affirms that “now is the time to think for the long term, to deliver more for young people and succeeding generations and to be better prepared for the challenges ahead.” The report states that “[s]ome countries have created opportunities for younger generations to have a voice in decisions that affect them, through youth councils, parliaments and ministries. However, these solutions have not always avoided tokenism, often remaining peripheral to core political processes. Youth-led protest movements are frequently driven by deep distrust of today’s political classes and desire for proper engagement in decision-making. Yet some authorities have clamped down on peaceful protest, dismissed young people as too inexperienced and treated them as beneficiaries or, worse, as threats rather than equal partners. At the global level, young people have been formally recognized as critical actors within intergovernmental frameworks on peace and security, sustainable development, climate change, human rights and humanitarian action. Yet here, too, engagement is not always meaningful, nor does it guarantee geographical, gender, income and other forms of diversity.”

Moderators
avatar for Harpreet Kaur

Harpreet Kaur

Business and Human Rights Specialist, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)
Harpreet Kaur is a Business and Human Rights Specialist at the UNDP’s Regional Bureau of Asia and the Pacific, where she oversees a regional project aiming at promoting responsible business practices through partnerships in Asia. She provides technical and advisory support to governments... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Justin Jos

Justin Jos

PhD candidate
Justin Jos is a PhD candidate at the Faculty of Law and Justice, University of New South Wales, Sydney. He completed his undergraduate law and business administration (BBA LLB) degree from National Law University Odisha, India and Master of Laws (Distinction) from University of Exeter... Read More →
avatar for Chelsea Elizabeth Islan

Chelsea Elizabeth Islan

model
Chelsea Elizabeth Islan (born 2 June 1995) is an Indonesian actress, model, and activist. She has received two consecutive Citra Award (the Indonesian Film Festival's annual event to honor cinematic achievements) nominations in the Best Actress category for Di Balik 98 (2015) and... Read More →
avatar for Zoha Shahid

Zoha Shahid

Senior Research Associate, Research Society of International Law
Zoha Shahid is a Senior Research Associate at the Research Society of International Law. She has been working on the intersection between business and human rights, and conducted extensive research on the current status of human rights protections within the business sector in Pakistan... Read More →
NA

Nourah Al-Sulaiman

Ensaniyat Project Manager, Migrant-rights.org
I am a 26 year old Kuwaiti with a Bachelors Degree in International Relations and a minor in History. Always having been passionate about human rights and law, I joined the Migrant-rights.org Team as Ensaniyat's Project Manager in 2017 where I have worked with over 140 youth fellows... Read More →
avatar for Mr Surya Deva

Mr Surya Deva

Chair, UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights
Mr. Surya Deva is a Professor at the Macquarie Law School, University of Macquarie, Sydney. He researches in the areas of business and human rights, India-China constitutional law, international human rights law, and sustainable development. Deva has published extensively in these... Read More →
avatar for Mohan Rabidas

Mohan Rabidas

President, JAGORON Youth Forum
https://www.thedailystar.net/supplements/nation-builders-tomorrow/inside-the-cha-polli-1535293?amp
MM

Mulan, Myanmar

Youth Activist from Blood Money Campaign
I am a youth activist to enhance volunteering spirit, activism in our community and to defend democracy, justice, and human rights. I am also a Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative (YSEALI) Alumni of Professional Fellowship Program - Civic Engagement.Before the coup, I promoted... Read More →



Tuesday November 30, 2021 7:30am - 8:45am CET
Virtual Plenary room

9:00am CET

Lessons from corporate human rights litigation


A RECORDING OF THIS SESSION IS AVAILABLE HERE.

Interpretation in English, French and Spanish will be available

Brief description of the session:
Commentary to Principle 26 of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights acknowledges: “Effective judicial mechanisms are at the core of ensuring access to remedy.” Despite continuing barriers to access to remedy for corporate human rights abuses, lawyers, activists and civil society organisations in recent years have successfully pursued cases against corporations in both common law and civil law jurisdictions. What lessons could various stakeholders such as States, corporations, victims, lawyers and civil society organisations (CSOs) learn from these corporate human rights litigation cases? By analysing selected cases from different jurisdictions, this session will try to distil some broad lessons not only for access to remedy and corporate accountability but also for policy makers as well as lawyers and consultants advising corporations. The term “human rights litigation” is used in a broad sense to capture any judicial proceedings aimed at seeking redress for breach of human rights, labour rights and environmental rights.

Key objectives:
The session aims to:
  • Assess positive access to remedy outcomes from corporate human rights litigation in recent years;
  • Showcases innovative strategies and tools used by lawyers to overcome various obstacles to access to remedy;
  • Discuss how human rights litigation against corporations is influencing their behaviour, including in relation to human rights due diligence; and
  • Examine the potential effect of mandatory human rights due diligence laws on litigation against corporations. 

Key questions:
  • Did these cases result in effective remedy (not merely access to remedy) to the victims of corporate human rights abuses? Any advice for lawyers or CSOs contemplating future litigation as to what works and what does not?   
  • How were various procedural, substantive and practical obstacles overcome in these cases? Was the process efficient in terms of cost and time involved?
  • Are confidential settlements problematic for corporate accountability purposes (e.g., private settlement of public wrongs)? If so, how could there be more transparency about remedial outcomes?
  • Will litigation against corporations discourage them from making public disclosure as part of human rights due diligence or otherwise? How will mandatory human rights due diligence laws change this situation?      
  • Any evidence of these cases brining in a systemic change as to how corporations operate and conduct human rights due diligence?

Backgroung documents:



Moderators
avatar for Mr Surya Deva

Mr Surya Deva

Chair, UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights
Mr. Surya Deva is a Professor at the Macquarie Law School, University of Macquarie, Sydney. He researches in the areas of business and human rights, India-China constitutional law, international human rights law, and sustainable development. Deva has published extensively in these... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Sandra Cossart

Sandra Cossart

Executive Director, Sherpa
Sandra Cossart is an international lawyer and Sherpa’s Executive Director. After starting her career within the EU institutions, she worked as a corporate lawyer and legal consultant in Paris, Russia and England. She joined Sherpa in 2010 and was at the forefront of some important... Read More →
avatar for Humberto Cantú Rivera

Humberto Cantú Rivera

Director, Instituto de Derechos Humanos y Empresas, Universidad de Monterrey (UDEM)
Profesor titular de la Escuela de Derecho y Ciencias Sociales de la Universidad de Monterrey (UDEM), y Director Ejecutivo del Instituto de Derechos Humanos y Empresas de la UDEM. Es Doctor en Derecho por la Universidad Panthéon-Assas París II, en Francia, y Miembro Asociado de su... Read More →
avatar for Richard Meeran

Richard Meeran

Partner, Head of International Department, Leigh Day
Richard is Head of the International Department at Leigh Day where he has been a partner since 1991. He specialises in multinational litigation in which he has been instrumental for 27 years. His work has transformed English law on the liability of multinationals through the imposition... Read More →
avatar for Keren Adams

Keren Adams

Legal Director, Human Rights Law Centre
Keren Adams is a Legal Director at the Human Rights Law Centre where she leads the Centre’s work on business and human rights. Keren has over 15 years’ experience working as a human rights lawyer and advocate in Australia and internationally. Prior to joining the HRLC, she was... Read More →
avatar for Thandeka Kathi

Thandeka Kathi

Attorney, Centre for Applied Legal Studies, University of Witwatersrand
Thandeka Kathi is an attorney and activist based at the Centre for Applied Legal Studies, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa. She is also currently completing a Master’s degree in International Human Rights Law at the University of Oxford. Thandeka has played... Read More →



Tuesday November 30, 2021 9:00am - 10:15am CET
Virtual Plenary room

10:25am CET

Building blocks for tech regulation – a Business & Human Rights approach

A RECORDING OF THIS SESSION IS AVAILABLE HERE.

Session organized by OHCHR B-Tech Project in cooperation with the Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights

Brief description of the session:
 
The State duty to protect against human rights abuses by business including from the tech sector requires states to adopt appropriate measures to prevent and address such abuses. States should consider the “full range of permissible preventative and remedial measures, including policies, legislation, regulations and adjudication” (UNGP1). Pillar I of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs) reflects human rights obligations that states have under international human rights law. Therefore, the UNGPs provide a useful roadmap for governments in addressing technology-related human rights issues. Through a smart-mix of measures, the State has a critical role in ensuring good corporate conduct, facilitating multi-stakeholder engagement, and driving the corporate responsibility to respect through measures that foster the uptake of human rights due diligence among technology companies.

As regulatory efforts to require technology companies to respect human rights intensify worldwide, B-Tech is consulting on the idea of a so-called “UNGPs check” that would serve as a tool to inform engagement with policy makers. The “UNGPs check” aims at guiding the legislative process and inform the design of tech regulation to foster rights-respecting regulatory frameworks.
 
Key objectives of the session:
  • Discuss the regulatory landscape: approaches by States aiming at protecting human rights in the context of digital technologies and with regard to business conduct
  • Consult on the drafting of building blocks for regulatory options for States to incentivize the tech sector to fulfill their responsibility to respect human rights

Key questions:
  • How can the UNGPs inform the development of regulation that aims at addressing tech company-related human rights abuses arising in the context of rapid technological transformation?
  • What should be the building blocks of a legislative process for addressing adverse human rights impacts stemming from technology company conduct?

Background to the discussion:
The B-Tech Project will contribute to addressing the urgent need to find principled and pragmatic ways to prevent and address human rights harms connected with the development of digital technologies and their use by corporate, government and non-governmental actors, including individual users. The UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs) provide a comprehensive and authoritative framework that can inform efforts by a range of actors, including governments and companies, to identify, prevent, mitigate and remedy human rights harm related to digital technologies. The premise of the B-Tech Project is that using the lens of all three pillars – Protect, Respect, Remedy - of the UNGPs can help clarify the respective roles and responsibilities of States and the private sector in relation to specific issues.

Background documents and relevant links:

Moderators
avatar for Lene Wendland

Lene Wendland

Chief Business and Human Rights, OHCHR
Lene Wendland is Chief of the Business and Human Rights Unit in UN Human Rights and leads UN Human Rights’ thematic work on business and human rights. She was part of the team of former Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General on Business and Human Rights, Professor John... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Anita Ramasastry

Anita Ramasastry

Member, Working Group on Business and Human Rights
Ms. Anita Ramasastry is the Roland L. Hjorth Professor of Law and the Director of the Graduate Program in Sustainable International Development at the University of Washington School Of Law. She researches and teaches in the fields of law and development, anti-corruption, international... Read More →
avatar for Abdul Z. Abdulrahim

Abdul Z. Abdulrahim

Univeristy of Oxford, Stears
avatar for Sebastian Smart

Sebastian Smart

Regional Director, INDH Chile
avatar for Giovanni De Gregorio

Giovanni De Gregorio

University of Oxford
avatar for Imane Bello

Imane Bello

Paris Bar, Lawyer
Imane Bello is a lawyer at the Paris Bar.She mainly advises on compliance and artificial intelligence (governance, risk management, ethics), human and digital rights as well as digital criminal law and personal data protection. Imane Bello teaches ethics and politics of artificial... Read More →


Tuesday November 30, 2021 10:25am - 11:40am CET
Virtual Plenary room

10:25am CET

Empowering people and building a business and human rights community in Central and Eastern Europe
Empowering people and building a business and human rights community in Central and Eastern Europe

Organized by the Working Group on Business and Human Rights in collaboration with the Business and Human Rights Lab at the Yaroslav Mudryi National Law University in Ukraine and the Polish Institute for Human Rights and Business

As the UNGPs turned 10 in June 2021, the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights took stock of the first decade of implementation. The stocktaking highlighted that the UNGPs have led to significant progress by providing a common framework for all stakeholders in managing business-related human rights risks and impacts, but that considerable gaps remain to effectively prevent and remedy harm caused by business, particularly for those in most vulnerable situations. Meaningful progress over the next 10 years depends on how these gaps are addressed.

This session provides an opportunity for States and other stakeholder in CEE region to share their own commitments and plans for scaling-up implementation and effectiveness of the Guiding Principles in the next decade in the region.

This Forum session is part of the Forum track on trends and challenges in promoting business respect for human rights in the context of each region of the world in the context of the Working Group’s project ‘Business and human rights: towards a decade of global implementation' (also known as “UNGPs 10+ / Next Decade BHR”).

Brief description of the session:
The session seeks to bring various relevant stakeholders together, including States, businesses, and business associations, investors, civil society actors and international organizations to discuss business and human rights issues in the Central and Eastern European context. The session will provide a platform to exchange knowledge on the region-specific challenges, share positive developments, as well as forward looking plans for scaling-up action to strengthen implementation of the UNGPs in the next decade and beyond. Among specific issues to be discussed, the session will consider the essential elements of a conducive environment for promoting responsible business conduct and discuss positive practices to overcome existing and systemic challenges, including through empowering stakeholders, building a strong business and human rights multi-stakeholder community as preconditions for moving forward in the next decade to a more effective implementation of the UN Guiding Principles (UNGPs).

Looking ahead, the region specific challenges require not only better regulation in a “smart mix” of legislative and policy initiatives, but more effective enforcement mechanisms, stronger civil society participation, and bottom-up and inclusive initiatives and strategies which are critical to the improvement of human rights record of companies operating in the region and the creation of a strong business and human rights multi-stakeholder community in the entire Central and Eastern European region.

Key objectives of the session:
  • to identify the most significant obstacles and opportunities to implement the UNGPs in the countries of the region;
  • to illustrate, through selected case studies, how transparent, multistakeholder and inclusive approaches may enhance/improve corporate respect for human rights and may contribute to the creation of a strong business and human rights community;
  • to discuss ways in which victims in the Central and Eastern European region may be empowered in seeking access to effective remedy against business related human rights abuses;
 
Key questions:
  • How governments, businesses and civil society actors successfully are overcoming the region-specific challenges to the effective implementation of UNGPs?
  • What reforms would create a more conducive environment for responsible business in Central and Eastern Europe? How can multi-stakeholder efforts help to build transformative business models for the future in the region?
  • Which good practices and key actors are there in the region for empowering victims in seeking effective remedy for business related human rights abuses?
 
Background to the discussion:

The very diverse region of Central and Eastern Europe continues to experience a low level of awareness on business and human rights. This is due to many factors, including a deficient rule of law environment, low legal awareness, the absence of strong democratic institutions, shrinking space for civil society, weak trade unions, the historic State control on economic processes with State-owned and municipality owned businesses that are not necessarily leading by example in their role as economic actors, as well as the often-ineffective systems of remedy for victims of business-related human rights abuses.

Moderators
avatar for Ms Beata Faracik

Ms Beata Faracik

Co-Founder and President of the Board, Polish Institute for Human Rights and Business
Beata Faracik is a co-founder and President of the board of PIHRB. A legal expert specialized in Human Rights & Business and RBC/CSR, she has approximately 20 years of professional experience the in public, private, and NGO sectors in various countries, including the Ministry of Justice... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Ms Antonina Gorbunova

Ms Antonina Gorbunova

Executive Director, Union of Indigenous Peoples “SOYUZ” (KMNSOYUZ)
Antonina Gorbunova is an indigenous Nenets lawyer and leader, born in the Kanin Peninsula in Russia’s High North. She practices law for ten years, including eight years of work on the rights of indigenous peoples. Her human rights career evolved from assistant to an indigenous Member... Read More →
avatar for Elżbieta Karska

Elżbieta Karska

Vice-chair, UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights
Ms. Elżbieta Karska is a Professor and the Head of the Department of Protection of Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law and the Director of the Institute of International Law, European Union and International Relations at the Faculty of Law and Administration, Cardinal... Read More →
avatar for Ms Olena Uvarova

Ms Olena Uvarova

Head of Business and Human Rights Lab, Yaroslav Mudryi National Law University, Ukraine
Ph.D in Law, lecturer in the Theory of Law Department, Head of the International Lab on business and human rights at Yaroslav Mudryi National Law University, member of the editorial board of the journal “Philosophy of Law and General Theory of Law” (EBSCO Publishing).In 2017 she... Read More →
avatar for Ms Inga Zarafyan

Ms Inga Zarafyan

President, ECOLUR, Armenia
Inga Zarafyan is the President of “EcoLur” Informational NGO, Ph.D. in Biophysics, Member of Anticorruption Center (Transparency International), Head of Informational-analytic Service of RA National Academy of Science, author of 25 scientific publications in biophysics, author... Read More →
avatar for Ms Katarzyna Kosakowska

Ms Katarzyna Kosakowska

Vice-Chairwoman of the National Commission of the Union, Polish National Trade Union of the Self-Employed "wBREw"
Vice-Chairwoman of the National Commission, National Trade Union of Self-Employed, Poland's first trade union dedicated to the self-employed and people working in other forms of employment.Legal expert and adviser with extensive advocacy, lobbying and managerial experience. Knowledge... Read More →
avatar for Mr Nicolaj Sønderbye

Mr Nicolaj Sønderbye

Senior Democracy and Human Rights Advisor, UNDP Ukraine
Nicolaj is a senior advisor on Democracy and Human Rights for UNDP Country Office in Ukraine. He is human rights lawyer and a development practitioner with more than 20 years of experience in human rights, democracy and governance at implementation, policy and management level. Nicolaj... Read More →
avatar for Mr  Alexandr Curașov

Mr Alexandr Curașov

Executive Director, CSR Moldova
Alexandr Curașov is the Executive Director of the CSR Moldova Association (Network of social responsible bussines) and also a cofounder of the Regional Center for Community Policies, an organization serving vulnerable and marginalized groups. Starting his way from being a drug user... Read More →
avatar for Ms Renata Yaresko

Ms Renata Yaresko

Head of Public Relationship Department, ENERGOATOM, Ukraine
Yaresko Renata began her career at NNEGC Energoatom in 2016 as an economist and currently heads the public relations department. Over the years, she has made a significant contribution to promoting the Energoatom brand as a responsible employer and enhancing the Company's image among... Read More →



Tuesday November 30, 2021 10:25am - 11:40am CET
Virtual Room 2

11:50am CET

Role of national human rights institutions in facilitating access to remedy: Different pathways


A RECORDING OF THIS SESSION IS AVAILABLE HERE.


Role of national human rights institutions in facilitating access to remedy: Different pathways 
  • Organizers: Working Group on Business and Human Rights, as supported by the Global Alliance of National Human Rights Institutions (GANHRI)
As the UNGPs turned 10 in June 2021, the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights took stock of the first decade of implementation in the context of the Working Group’s project ‘Business and human rights: towards a decade of global implementation' (also known as “UNGPs 10+ / Next Decade BHR”). The stocktaking highlighted that the UNGPs have led to significant progress by providing a common framework for all stakeholders in managing business-related human rights risks and impacts, but that considerable gaps remain to effectively prevent and remedy harm caused by business, particularly for those in most vulnerable situations. Meaningful progress over the next 10 years depends on how these gaps are addressed.

Brief description of the session

National human rights institutions (NHRIs) play a critical role in protecting and promoting human rights, including in the business and human rights context. The UN Working Group on Business and Rights in its June 2021 report to the Human Rights Council (A/HRC/47/39/Add.3) articulated different pathways – direct, indirect, and foundational – available for NHRIs to facilitate access to remedy for business-related human rights abuses. The session will try to match the “on paper” recommendations contained in this report with “practice” on the ground, especially in times of challenges posed by COVID-19. In particular, it will focus on NHRIs’ practices regarding collaboration with other judicial and non-judicial remedy mechanisms, cooperation amongst NHRIs in cross-border and transnational cases, and protection of civil society organisations and human rights defenders. The session will also look at the role that UN agencies and/or other organisations such as the GANHRI, regional networks of NHRIs, the UNDP and the OHCHR could play in strengthening the capacity of NHRIs in implementing the recommendations contained in the report.

Key objectives of the session
  • To illustrate – through good practices, measures, and tools – the ways in which NHRIs are already facilitating, or could facilitate, access to remedy for business-related human rights abuses in line with the recommendations of the Working Group;
  • To highlight the challenges and limitations that NHRIs face in meeting facilitating access to remedy in direct, indirect, and foundational ways and explore how those challenges could be overcome; 
  • To discuss the role that various UN agencies and/or other organisations to play in strengthening the capacity of NHRIs in the business and human rights field.

Key questions
  • How are NHRIs facilitating access to remedy for business-related human rights abuses in direct, indirect, and foundational ways?
  • What are the innovative practices adopted by NHRIs to collaborate with other judicial and non-judicial remedy mechanisms, cooperate with peer NHRIs in cross-border and transnational cases, and protect civil society organisations and human rights defenders?
  • What are the main challenges and limitations faced by NHRIs in facilitating access to remedy? How could be these challenges be overcome, especially by actions taken by States and UN agencies?
  • What practical tools have been developed by UN agencies or other organisations such as GANHRI, regional networks of NHRIs, OHCHR and UNDP to strengthen the capacity of NHRIs to fulfil their mandates in relation to business and human rights issues?

Background to the discussion

The important role of NHRIs in promoting the implementation of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs) and preventing business-related human rights abuses is widely accepted, as well as their bridging role between stakeholders in promoting transparent, participatory and inclusive national processes. In July 2018, the Human Rights Council (A/HRC/RES/38/13) requested the UN Working Group "to analyse further the role of national human rights institutions in facilitating access to remedy for business-related human rights abuses, and to convene a two-day global consultation on these issues, open to all stakeholders, and to inform the Council by its forty-fourth session as appropriate". In line with this mandate, the Working Group invited NHRIs and other stakeholders to provide input. It also organised, in collaboration with GANHRI, a global consultation in Geneva in October 2019. The UN Human Rights Council (A/HRC/RES 44/15) then further encouraged the UN Working Group “to continue its work on the role of national human rights institutions in promoting business and human rights”, and the Working Group submitted its report to the Human Rights Council in June 2021 on the role of NHRIs in facilitating access to remedy for business-related human rights abuses (A/HRC/47/39/Add.3) in which it reviewed the various direct, indirect and foundational ways of the work of NHRIs. Against this background and in line with the overarching theme of the 10th UN Forum, this session will focus on how NHRIs and other organisations could implement the Working Group’s recommendations in this report. The session will also reflect on the role that NHRI could play in implementing the roadmap proposed by the Working Group as part of “UNGPs 10+” project.

Moderators
avatar for Ms Amina Bouayach

Ms Amina Bouayach

Chairperson, National Human Rights Council of Morocco
Ms. Amina Bouayach is a human rights defender who has been working for international and national NGOs. She is the President of the National Human Rights Council (CNDH) of Morocco since 2018. She served as Vice-President then Secretary General of the International Federation for Human... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Mr. Augusto Jordán Rodas Andrade

Mr. Augusto Jordán Rodas Andrade

Ombudsman, Ombudsman's Office of Guatemala
Human Rights Ombudsman of Guatemala for the period 2017-2022President of the Ibero-American Federation ofOmbudsman (FIO) for the period 2019-2021PhD student. Universidad Rafael Landivar (Guatemala) and University of the Basque Country/ Euskal Herriko UnibertsitateaSpecialist in Constitutional... Read More →
avatar for Mr Surya Deva

Mr Surya Deva

Chair, UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights
Mr. Surya Deva is a Professor at the Macquarie Law School, University of Macquarie, Sydney. He researches in the areas of business and human rights, India-China constitutional law, international human rights law, and sustainable development. Deva has published extensively in these... Read More →
avatar for Mr Othman Hashim

Mr Othman Hashim

Chairperson, Human Rights Commission of Malaysia – SUHAKAM
Tan Sri Othman bin Hashim joined the Administrative and Diplomatic Service in 1979 upon graduation and retired as Secretary General of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Malaysia, the most senior office for a career diplomat.He holds a Bachelor of Economics (Hons) from the University... Read More →
avatar for Ms Teresa de Moura Anjinho

Ms Teresa de Moura Anjinho

Deputy Ombudswoman, Ombudsman's Office, Portugal
Teresa Anjinho is graduated in Law at the University of Coimbra in 1997 and Master in Human Rights and Democratisation at the University of Padua, Italy (1998). Deputy Ombudsperson of Portugal since December, 2017, she was Member of Parliament, Secretary of State for Justice of the... Read More →
avatar for Mercy Larbi

Mercy Larbi

Deputy Commissioner, Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice
MS. MERCY LARBI, currently, the Deputy Commissioner of Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) Ghana was appointed in January 2020. As a Deputy Commissioner, she has oversight over all the mandate areas of the Commission but specifically in charge of Human Rights... Read More →



Tuesday November 30, 2021 11:50am - 1:00pm CET
Virtual Plenary room

1:00pm CET

Realizing a decade of action on the UN Guiding Principles – stakeholder perspectives
About this session
This UN Forum session is framed around the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights’ (UNWG) new UNGPs 10+ Roadmap for the Next Decade, with recommendations on how to scale up implementation of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs).

The session will feature:
  • A brief overview of the Roadmap’s action areas and priority goals.
  • Perspectives from business, civil society, indigenous peoples, and trade union representatives on how to realize the recommendations and a decade of UNGPs action.

Background
As the UNGPs turned 10 in June 2021, the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights, as part of its mandate to promote the UNGPs, took stock of the first decade of implementation. The stocktaking highlighted that the UNGPs have led to significant progress by providing a common framework for all stakeholders in managing business-related human rights risks and impacts, but that considerable implementation and coherence challenges remain. As follow-on from the stocktaking, the Working Group developed its UNGPs 10+ Roadmap for the Next Decade with forward-looking recommendations for the next ten years. Building on the stocktaking’s analysis of achievements to date and existing challenges and opportunities, it sets out key action areas for the road ahead for progressively getting closer to fuller UNGPs realization. Each action area identifies priority goals and supporting actions to be taken by States and businesses as well as others that play a role in realizing UNGPs implementation.

Read the UNGPs 10+ Roadmap: https://www.ohchr.org/Documents/Issues/Business/WG/ungps10plusroadmap.pdf 

UNGPs 10th anniversary page: https://www.ohchr.org/ungps10

#UNForumBHR / #bizhumanrights / #UNGPs10plus / #nextdecadeBHR / @ungps10plus

Speakers
avatar for Anita Ramasastry

Anita Ramasastry

Member, Working Group on Business and Human Rights
Ms. Anita Ramasastry is the Roland L. Hjorth Professor of Law and the Director of the Graduate Program in Sustainable International Development at the University of Washington School Of Law. She researches and teaches in the fields of law and development, anti-corruption, international... Read More →
avatar for Fernanda Hopenhaym

Fernanda Hopenhaym

member, UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights
Ms. Fernanda Hopenhaym is Co-Executive Director at Project on Organizing, Development, Education and Research (PODER), an organization in Latin America dedicated to corporate accountability. Since 2006 Ms. Hopenhaym has been working on issues related to human rights and financial... Read More →
avatar for Dante Pesce

Dante Pesce

Founder and Executive Director, Vincular Center for Social Responsibility and Sustainable Development
Mr. Dante Pesce was a member of the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights 2015-2021.Mr. Pesce holds a Masters in Political Science from the Catholic University of Chile and a Masters in Public Administration from Harvard University. He is the Founder and Executive Director... Read More →
avatar for Luis Rodrigo MORALES VELEZ

Luis Rodrigo MORALES VELEZ

Senior Advisor, International Organisation of Employers
Luis Rodrigo is a Senior Advisor at the International Organisation of Employers. As such he is responsible of developing guidance and capacity building for IOE members and networks. Moreover, his practice focuses on industrial relations, international labour standards, the future... Read More →
avatar for Ruwan Subasinghe

Ruwan Subasinghe

Legal Director, International Transport Workers' Federation (ITF)
Ruwan Subasinghe is the Legal Director of the International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF). He specialises in labour, human rights and international law. Ruwan represents the ITF at external bodies including the International Labour Organization (ILO) and the Organization for... Read More →
avatar for Mauricio Lazala

Mauricio Lazala

Deputy Director, Business & Human Rights Resource Centre
Mauricio Lazala, Deputy Director & Head of Europe Office (based in Frankfurt)Mauricio joined the Resource Centre in 2006. Until his appointment as Deputy Director in Feb. 2011 he served as Senior Researcher and Head of Latin America & Middle East. As part of the senior management... Read More →
avatar for Bettina Reinboth

Bettina Reinboth

Director of Human Rights and Social Issues, Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI)
avatar for Xiaohui Liang

Xiaohui Liang

Chief Researcher & Deputy Director; Adjunct Professor,, Office for Social Responsibility of CNTAC; Peking University Law School
Leading expert in CSR, sustainability and business and human rights in China. Since 2006, adjunct professor on Business and Human Rights, Peking University Law School (first Chinese scholar to teach such a course in China). Key expert in developing various CSR standards and initiatives... Read More →
JC

Joan Carling

Executive Director, Indigenous Peoples International (IPRI)
I am an  indigenous activist from the Cordillera, Philippines.  I have been  working on indigenous issues at the grassroots to international levels for more than 20 years.  I am passionate about  human rights and indigenous peoples rights,  environment,  climate change  and... Read More →
avatar for Pamela Mar

Pamela Mar

Vice-Chair, International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) Commission on Environment & Energy
Ms. Pamela Mar is Vice-Chair of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) Commission on Environment & Energy; member of ICC Working Group on business and human rights; and Executive Vice President for Knowledge and Applications, covering trade, sustainability and international affairs... Read More →



Tuesday November 30, 2021 1:00pm - 2:00pm CET
Virtual Room 2

2:00pm CET

Increasing the protection of human rights in the face of Strategic Lawsuits Against Public Participation

A RECORDING OF THIS SESSION IS AVAILABLE HERE.


Session organized by the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights, in collaboration with the Business & Human Rights Resource Centre (BHRRC), the International Service for Human Rights (ISHR), Front Line Defenders, OECD Watch, SOMO, Institute for Human Rights and Business, Publish What You Pay, Swedwatch and the Zero Tolerance Initiative.

Interpretation in English, French, and Spanish

Brief description of the session
Every day across the globe, people bravely speak out against injustice, often at great personal risk. Human rights defenders are at the forefront of promoting and protecting our human rights, natural resources, and shared planet, as well as playing a vital role in drawing attention to the harms created by abusive business practices and monitoring companies’ compliance with business and human rights standards. Human rights defenders are not anti-development, but they are often painted as such and face a range of attacks for merely speaking up against business-related human rights harms, especially in jurisdictions where the rule of law is weak and respect for human rights is lacking.

Strategic lawsuits against public participation (SLAPPs) are one type of attack against human rights defenders. These are civil or criminal lawsuits brought, or initiated, by business actors that divert time, energy, and resources away from human rights defenders’ vital work and infringe upon a range of human rights, including the freedom of expression and of assembly and association. Recent research by the Business & Human Rights Resource Centre shows that SLAPPs are a global problem; the analysis identified 355 cases that bear the hallmarks of SLAPPs brought or initiated by business actors since 2015. According to this research, the highest number of SLAPPs took place in Latin America (39%), followed by Asia and the Pacific (25%), Europe & Central Asia (18%), Africa (8.5%), and North America (9%). Also, 63% of cases involved criminal charges. Most individuals and groups facing SLAPPs (65% of cases) raised concerns about projects in four sectors: mining (108), agriculture and livestock (76), logging and lumber (29), and palm oil (20).

Under the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, business enterprises have a responsibility to respect human rights and to identify, prevent and mitigate human rights risks to human rights defenders. Each of these actors has a critical responsibility in stopping the use of SLAPPs to silence and intimidate. In June 2021, the Working Group on Business and Human Rights released the Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights: Guidance on Ensuring Respect for Human Rights Defenders (A/HRC/47/39/Add.2) which included recommendations to States and businesses to address the problem of SLAPPs.

This session will present the global trend of SLAPPs including an overview of the problem in terms of the defenders most affected, the business sectors most commonly involved, the types of proceedings brought, and the common charges. The audience will also hear from defenders being targeted by SLAPPs, as well as find out about the promising initiatives from States and business enterprises to address this growing and urgent issue. The speakers will explore actions that States, and businesses need to take to mitigate and eliminate the use of SLAPPs against human rights defenders.

Objective of the session:
Increase awareness of the scope and nature of SLAPPs globally, the associated human rights harms, and actions that States and business enterprises need to take under the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights to mitigate this global problem. The session aims to provide an overview of the seriousness of the phenomenon, the negative consequences for the rule of law and democratic order, as well as provide recommendations to States and businesses on best practices for mitigation and redress.

Format of the session:
The session will start with an introduction by Anita Ramasastry, member of the Working Group on Business and Human Rights, including the announcement of the recipient of the 2021 Human Rights and Business Award, an annual award "for outstanding work by human rights defenders in the Global South or former Soviet Union addressing the human rights impacts of business in those regions". The recipient will briefly accept the award. Further information about the award and the 2021 recipient will be posted on the session webpage as the award is announced.
Anita Ramasastry will then briefly present the Working Group’s guidance, presented to the Human Rights Council in June. She will also outline the increasing use of legal measures to intimidate and criminalize defenders through SLAPPs, and the Working Group’s reflections on this scourge. She will focus on how the filing of SLAPPs is aimed at silencing human rights defenders’ critical voices, restricting their access to remedy, dampening the appetite of others to speak out, and restricting the freedoms of expression and of assembly and association. The session will then hear from a range of speakers with personal experience of SLAPPs, and different ways to address them.

Key questions:
  • What is the scope and nature of SLAPPs globally?
  • What are the associated human rights harms caused to human rights defenders by their use?
  • What are the positive steps taken by businesses to address such attacks against defenders?
  • What are the challenges that human rights defenders face when trying to defend themselves against SLAPPs?
  • What are different stakeholders doing to address the problem, such as national and regional bar associations, and regional organisations?

Background documents:

Moderators
avatar for Anita Ramasastry

Anita Ramasastry

Member, Working Group on Business and Human Rights
Ms. Anita Ramasastry is the Roland L. Hjorth Professor of Law and the Director of the Graduate Program in Sustainable International Development at the University of Washington School Of Law. She researches and teaches in the fields of law and development, anti-corruption, international... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Emmanuel Umpula

Emmanuel Umpula

Directeur, AFREWATCH
M. Umpula Nkumba Emmanuel, est directeur et fondateur de Afrewatch (AFREWATCH), il est juriste et travaille depuis 2002 à la défense et la promotion des droits de l'homme en RDC et en Afrique sur les entreprises et les droits de l'homme. Pendant son parcours, il a occupé plusieurs... Read More →
avatar for Rebecca DeWinter Schmitt

Rebecca DeWinter Schmitt

Associate Program Director, Investor Alliance for Human Rights
Dr. Rebecca DeWinter-Schmitt (she/her/hers) is the Associate Program Director of the Investor Alliance for Human Rights, connecting institutional investors and their allies with the tools and strategies to promote human rights and responsible business conduct.Rebecca is an expert... Read More →
avatar for Lady Nancy Zuluaga Jaramillo

Lady Nancy Zuluaga Jaramillo

Legal Researcher with the Civic Freedoms & Human Rights Defenders, Business & Human Rights Resource Centre
Lady Nancy Zuluaga Jaramillo joined the Business & Human Rights Resource Centre in December 2019 as a Legal Researcher with the Civic Freedoms & Human Rights Defenders. Since then, she has been leading a global project on SLAPPs. Before joining the organization, Lady Nancy was a staff... Read More →
avatar for Sutharee Wannasiri

Sutharee Wannasiri

Communities Consultant, Asia, Accountability Counsel
Sutharee Wannasiri currently works as Communities Consultant, Asia with Accountability Counsel, supporting communities to access justice and remedies from environmental and social harms of development finances. She has extensive working experiences in research, public policy advocacy... Read More →
avatar for Mary Lawlor

Mary Lawlor

Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human Rights Defenders
Ms. Mary Lawlor is the Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human Rights Defenders since 1 May 2020. She was born and educated in Ireland and is an Adjunct Professor of Business and Human Rights. She was the founder and director of Front Line Defenders (2001-2016) and Director of... Read More →
avatar for Leanne Govindsamy

Leanne Govindsamy

Programme Head: Corporate Accountability and Transparency, Centre for Environmental Rights
Leanne Govindsamy is a human rights lawyer working towards social and environmental justice. As head of the Corporate, Accountability and Transparency Programme at the Centre for Environmental Rights, she utilises legal advocacy and other tools to promote and protect constitutional... Read More →
avatar for Charlie Holt

Charlie Holt

Legal Counsel for campaigns, Greenpeace International
Charlie Holt works as legal counsel for campaigns at Greenpeace International, where he leads the organisation's SLAPP resilience strategy. Until 2019 his work focused on the US, where he worked on two aggressive large-scale SLAPPs targeting Greenpeace and helped set up the anti... Read More →



Tuesday November 30, 2021 2:00pm - 3:15pm CET
Virtual Plenary room

3:25pm CET

Making mandatory human rights due diligence work

A RECORDING OF THIS SESSION IS AVAILABLE HERE.


As mandatory measures are being further developed, there is a need to consider how enforcement of such measures can be effective in practice, ensuring that the focus of implementation is to drive better outcomes for people. Doing so will depend on including groups at risk of vulnerability or marginalization, trade unions, human rights defenders and others in the consultative processes leading to the drafting of legislation.
In other words, there is a need to design legislation and its enforcement to drive meaningful due diligence, including by clarifying expectations on the quality of due diligence; how companies should document due diligence beyond simply declaring that they have done it; and how to guarantee remediation. As mandatory human rights due diligence laws emerge in different jurisdictions, the UNGPs (together with OECD Guidelines which integrate the UNGPs due diligence standard) can provide a focal point for consistency and quality of laws. However, questions of enforcement remain open. Among the key issues for effective delivery of mandatory due diligence legislation, are the needs for a structure (national, regional, global) that can support implementers (regulators, business) and other stakeholders with a role to play (reinforce implementation drive through dialogue, engagement and monitoring).

This forum session will involve different stakeholders in dialogue on the most effective set of enforcement mechanisms needed for meaningful due diligence.

Speakers
avatar for Anita Ramasastry

Anita Ramasastry

Member, Working Group on Business and Human Rights
Ms. Anita Ramasastry is the Roland L. Hjorth Professor of Law and the Director of the Graduate Program in Sustainable International Development at the University of Washington School Of Law. She researches and teaches in the fields of law and development, anti-corruption, international... Read More →
avatar for Jennifer Zerk

Jennifer Zerk

Legal Consultant, OHCHR Accountability and Remedy Project
avatar for Gilles Goedhart

Gilles Goedhart

Team Leader Mandatory Due Diligence, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of The Netherlands
In the Foreign Service since 2012. I became involved with Business and Human Rights in 2014 when I joined the Human Rights Unit of my Ministry. I was in charge of the Dutch National Action Plan from 2014-2017. After a posting to our Embassy in Beijing, I returned to The Hague to become... Read More →
avatar for Bart Devos

Bart Devos

European Director, Responsible Business Alliance
avatar for Arnold Kwesiga

Arnold Kwesiga

Coordinator, Centre for Human Rights/African Coalition for Corporate Accountability
Arnold manages the Business and Human rights program at the Centre for Human Rights, University of Pretoria (the Centre) and also oversees the work of the African Coalition for Corporate Accountability (ACCA) which is hosted by the Centre.  He is a Human Rights Advocate and an academic... Read More →
avatar for Christopher Patz

Christopher Patz

Policy Officer, European Coalition for Corporate Justice (ECCJ)


Tuesday November 30, 2021 3:25pm - 4:40pm CET
Virtual Plenary room

4:45pm CET

Discutiendo la hoja de ruta regional para la proxima decada en America Latina y el Caribe - Discussing the regional roadmap for the next decade in Latin America and the Caribbean

A RECORDING OF THIS SESSION IS AVAILABLE HERE.


Interpretation will be available in English, French and Spanish

Brief description of the session:
The VI Regional Forum on BHR in LAC -4-6 October discussed key actions that should be incorporated into the regional roadmap on BHR.  Through 46 sessions and other submissions received, key actions for States, business and other stakeholders have been identified. The recommendations of this regional roadmap are based on the important advances generated by the implementation of the  "Responsible Business Conduct in Latin America and the Caribbean project “(RBCLAC)  Project, which constitutes a unprecedented collaboration between OHCHR, OECD, ILO and ,with the support of the European Union (EU). The Projects seeks to support the development and implementation of public policies of BHR, to promote the strengthening of access to remedy, to Enhance the understanding and capacity of stakeholders (especially business) to implement due diligence, and to  to identify, prevent and address adverse impacts on human rights, decent work and to Facilitate the sharing of experiences and lessons learned in this area. The recommendations also draw on report and consultation processes of the UNGPS 10+ project, as well [1]as the discussion of the six Regional Consultations and Forums on Business and Human Rights for Latin America and the Caribbean,[2]and other key studies carried out by OHCHR, the Working Group, OECD and ILO, as well as other partner organizations.
During this Forum’s session, the regional roadmap for the next decade of business and human right will be presented. Its practical implementation and monitoring will be then discussed with key stakeholders.
After a presentation of the regional roadmap, key stakeholders will discuss how they could implement these recommendations and agree on specific actions to track the progress and foster multi-stakeholder collaboration for the next decade.

Objectives:
  • Present the final regional roadmap
  • Discuss concrete ideas to foster implementation and track advances, including through multi-stakeholders collaboration


La hoja de ruta regional para la próxima década en America Latina y el Caribe (ALC)

Breve descripción de la sesión:
En el VI Foro Regional sobre DDHH en ALC -4-6 de octubre se discutieron las acciones clave que deben ser incorporadas en la hoja de ruta regional sobre DDHH.  A través de 46 sesiones y otras presentaciones recibidas, se han identificado acciones clave para los Estados, las empresas y otras partes interesadas. Las recomendaciones de esta hoja de ruta regional se basan en los importantes avances generados a traes de la implementación del "Proyecto Conducta Empresarial Responsable en América Latina y el Caribe" (CERALC) que constituye una colaboración sin precedente entre la ACNUDH la OCDE, la OIT y, con el apoyo de la Unión Europea (UE). El proyecto busca apoyar el desarrollo y la aplicación de políticas públicas de conducta empresarial responsable, promover el fortalecimiento del acceso a reparación, mejorar la comprensión y la capacidad de las partes interesadas (especialmente las empresas) para aplicar la debida diligencia y facilitar el intercambio de experiencias y lecciones aprendidas en esta área. Las recomendaciones también se basan en los informes y procesos de consulta del proyecto UNGPS 10+, así como de las discusiones de las seis Consultas y Foros Regionales sobre Empresas y Derechos Humanos para América Latina y el Caribe, y en otros estudios clave realizados por la ACNUDH, el Grupo de Trabajo, la OCDE y la OIT, así como por otras organizaciones asociadas.
Durante la sesión de este Foro, se presentará la hoja de ruta regional para la próxima década de empresas y derechos humanos. A continuación, se debatirá su aplicación práctica y su seguimiento con las principales partes interesadas.
Tras la presentación de la hoja de ruta regional, representantes de diferentes sectores debatirán cómo podrían poner en práctica estas recomendaciones y acordarán acciones específicas para hacer un seguimiento de los avances y fomentar la colaboración entre las distintas partes interesadas para la próxima década.

Objetivos de la sesión:
  • Presentar la hoja de ruta regional definitiva
  • Debatir ideas concretas para fomentar la aplicación y hacer un seguimiento de los avances, incluso mediante la colaboración de múltiples partes interesadas

[1] See UN Doc. A/HRC/47/39.
 
  [2] Fifth Latin American and Caribbean Regional Forum on Business and Human Rights UN Doc. A/HRC/47/39/Add.4 (11 June 2021); Fourth Latin American and Caribbean Regional Consultation on Business and Human Rights UN Doc. A/HRC/44/43/Add.4 (8 June 2020); Third Latin American and Caribbean Regional Consultation on Business and Human Rights A/HRC/38/48/Add.3 (4 June 2019); First Latin American and Caribbean Regional Consultation on Business and Human Rights A/HRC/26/25/Add.2 (24 April 2014). See also videos of the sessions of the VI Regional Forum available at: https://vifororegional.empresasyderechoshumanos.org.

Moderators
avatar for Fernanda Hopenhaym

Fernanda Hopenhaym

member, UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights
Ms. Fernanda Hopenhaym is Co-Executive Director at Project on Organizing, Development, Education and Research (PODER), an organization in Latin America dedicated to corporate accountability. Since 2006 Ms. Hopenhaym has been working on issues related to human rights and financial... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Dante Pesce

Dante Pesce

Founder and Executive Director, Vincular Center for Social Responsibility and Sustainable Development
Mr. Dante Pesce was a member of the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights 2015-2021.Mr. Pesce holds a Masters in Political Science from the Catholic University of Chile and a Masters in Public Administration from Harvard University. He is the Founder and Executive Director... Read More →
avatar for Renata Nascimento Szczerbacki

Renata Nascimento Szczerbacki

Petrobras Social Responsibility Planning and Performance Manager, Petrobras
Renata Nascimento Szczerbacki is Responsible for: Petrobras Sustainability Report; evaluate the performance of social responsibility through the DJSI, ISE, CHRB. Managing social risk analysis activities; human rights and company corporate volunteering.18 year experience in the oil... Read More →
avatar for Diana Figueroa

Diana Figueroa

Representative and Researcher for Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean, Business & Human Rights Resource Centre
Diana Figueroa Prado is Representative and Researcher for Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean at the Business & Human Rights Resource Centre since August 2019. She leads the work in that region focusing on the support to civil society and communities who defend the rights to... Read More →
avatar for Maria Paz Anzorreguy

Maria Paz Anzorreguy

Director for ILO Coordination, International Organisation of Employers
Maria Paz Anzorreguy is the International Organisation of Employers (IOE) Director for ILO Coordination. She represents the Employers in the ILO governance structures; provides legal advice on issues before the ILO supervisory system. Maria is also one of the leaders of the IOE Gender... Read More →
avatar for Nancy Patricia Gutierrez Castañeda

Nancy Patricia Gutierrez Castañeda

Consejera, Consejera Presidencial para los Derechos Humanos y Asuntos Internacionales
En virtud de su experiencia y liderazgo en temas de Derechos Humanos, Nancy Patricia Gutiérrez Castañeda, fue designada por el presidente, Iván Duque, como Consejera Presidencial para los Derechos Humanos y Asuntos Internacionales.Fue la primera mujer en la historia del país en... Read More →
avatar for Juana Toledo Pascual

Juana Toledo Pascual

Consejo de Pueblos Mayas
Mujer Maya Q’anjob’al lideresa, originaria del municipio de Santa Eulalia, Huehuetenango, Guatemala.Ha participado en diversos procesos de formación y reflexión, sobre participación política de los pueblos indígenas.Forma parte de la dirección del Consejo de Pueblos Wuxhtaj... Read More →




Tuesday November 30, 2021 4:45pm - 6:00pm CET
Virtual Plenary room

6:00pm CET

Update on the process to elaborate a legally binding instrument on business and human rights

Session organized by the Permanent Mission of Ecuador to the United Nations Office and Other International Organizations at Geneva (Chair-Rapporteur of the OEIGWG)

Interpretation in English, French, Spanish and Russian will be provided by DOCIP for Indigenous Peoples

Brief description of the session:
The open-ended intergovernmental working group (OEIGWG) on transnational corporations and other business enterprises with respect to human rights was established by HRC Resolution 26/9 of June 2014, with the concrete mandate “to elaborate an international legally binding instrument to regulate, in international human rights law, the activities of transnational corporations and other business enterprises”. Since 2015, the Working Group has held seven sessions, with increasing participation by States and other relevant stakeholders taking part in the sessions’ discussions and deliberations. In the last 4 years (4th, 5th, 6th and 7th sessions), this process has incorporated a new pragmatic, inclusive and progressive approach in full synergy with other existing frameworks. In spite of the remaining different views and assessments regarding certain provisions of the Third Revised Draft of the legally binding instrument, several States and other relevant stakeholders that participated during the 7th session of the OEIGWG from 25-29 October 2021 recognized the improvements introduced in the text, noting the greater clarity and consistency among its various provisions.

The future legally binding instrument (LBI) and the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs) can and should be complementary and mutually reinforcing. Recent advances in legal and regulatory initiatives, as well as those in the process of elaboration, including the OEIGWG at the international level, clearly demonstrate the need for non-binding standards on business and human rights to be complemented with binding norms. This will help achieve the common objective of strengthening the protection of human rights and promoting effective corporate accountability and redress for victims of abuses committed in the context of business activities.

Key objectives of the session:
The session aims to:
  • Facilitate the stock-taking and lesson-sharing between governments and other relevant actors, on how the two processes mentioned above can benefit and strengthen each other, in light of the conclusions of the 7th session of the Working Group and the recommendations of the Chair-Rapporteur, and the concrete recent legal developments, trends, challenges and good practices in preventing and addressing business-related human rights impacts.
  • Explore the opportunities provided by the LBI to make concrete progress towards the protection of human rights in the business sector, improved accountability and more effective remedies for victims, as well as to strengthen the complementary implementation of the UNGPs.
 
Key questions:
  • How can the future LBI and the implementation of the UNGPs promote and facilitate the respect, protection and fulfillment in the context of business activities?
  • In terms of process, how States and all relevant actors could contribute constructively to build consensus around the draft text of the LBI?

Background to the discussion:
Ecuador, in its capacity of Chair-Rapporteur of the OEIGWG, has submitted the Zero Draft in 2018, the Revised Draft (Rev.1) in 2019, the Second Revised Draft (Rev.2) in 2020, and in 2021 the Third Revised Draft (Rev.3). The Rev.3 sought to further align its provisions with existing instruments and frameworks, such as the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, the ILO Tripartite Declaration on Multinational Enterprises and Social Policy, and other relevant ILO instruments, as well as the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises, among others, under a pragmatic and progressive approach.

The 7th session concluded with the adoption of the recommendations of the Chair-Rapporteur and the conclusions of the Working Group, which included inter alia, the Chair-Rapporteur invitation to a group of Ambassadors in Geneva to act as “Friends of the Chair” to start consultations with a view to facilitate and advance work on the draft legally binding instrument during the inter-sessional period. The Chair-Rapporteur will update the draft legally binding instrument taking into consideration the compilation of the concrete textual proposals submitted by States during the seventh session and the outcomes of the consultations as reported by the “Friends of the Chair”, and circulate it, no later than the end of July 2022. In addition, the Chair-Rapporteur will note the concrete textual proposals submitted by the civil society organizations and other relevant stakeholders during the 7th session, for the appropriate consideration of the States in the work on the draft legally binding instrument after the session. They will be consulted by the “Friends of the Chair” and be invited to submit written inputs.

The full report and documents of the 7th and previous sessions can be found at https://bit.ly/30Eg57J

Moderators
avatar for Nathalie Stadelmann

Nathalie Stadelmann

Human Rights Officer, UN Human Rights Geneva
I am human rights officer at UN Human Rights in Geneva. I work on business and human rights issues, and serve as the project coordinator of the B-Tech Project – a UN Human Rights flagship initiative aimed at increasing the use of the UNGPs in the tech industry and  at embedding... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Alejandro Davalos

Alejandro Davalos

Deputy Permanent Representative of Ecuador to the UN in Geneva, Chargé d’Affaires, on behalf of the Chair-Rapporteur of the OEIGWG on TNCs and OBEs
Alejandro Dávalos is a career member of the Ecuadorian Foreign Service with the rank of Minister. He is currently serving as Deputy Permanent Representative at the Permanent Mission of Ecuador to the United Nations in Geneva (2018-present).Mr. Dávalos served as Vice Minister of... Read More →
avatar for Mr Surya Deva

Mr Surya Deva

Chair, UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights
Mr. Surya Deva is a Professor at the Macquarie Law School, University of Macquarie, Sydney. He researches in the areas of business and human rights, India-China constitutional law, international human rights law, and sustainable development. Deva has published extensively in these... Read More →
avatar for Olivier De Schutter

Olivier De Schutter

UN Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, UN Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights
Professor Olivier De Schutter (Belgium) was appointed the UN Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights by the Human Rights Council at its 43rd session, in March 2020. A Professor of Law at UCLouvain and at SciencesPo (Paris), Mr. De Schutter was the Special Rapporteur... Read More →
avatar for Kinda Mohamadieh

Kinda Mohamadieh

Senior Researcher and Legal Adviser, Third World Network
Kinda Mohamadieh is legal advisor and senior researcher with the Third World Network office in Geneva, where her work focuses on WTO processes and negotiations, international investment governance and the accountability of business enterprises with respect to human rights.
avatar for Humberto Cantú Rivera

Humberto Cantú Rivera

Director, Instituto de Derechos Humanos y Empresas, Universidad de Monterrey (UDEM)
Profesor titular de la Escuela de Derecho y Ciencias Sociales de la Universidad de Monterrey (UDEM), y Director Ejecutivo del Instituto de Derechos Humanos y Empresas de la UDEM. Es Doctor en Derecho por la Universidad Panthéon-Assas París II, en Francia, y Miembro Asociado de su... Read More →



Tuesday November 30, 2021 6:00pm - 7:15pm CET
Virtual Room 2
 
Wednesday, December 1
 

9:00am CET

Human rights- compatible International Investment Agreements: From theory to practice

A RECORDING OF THIS SESSION IS AVAILABLE HERE.


Interpretation available in English, French and Spanish

Brief description of the session:
In its 2021 report to the UN General Assembly (A/76/238), the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights highlights that the current international investment regime reflects three “I”s: imbalance, inconsistency, and irresponsibility. The report, which unpacks Principles 9 of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs), urges States to ensure that all existing and future investment agreements are compatible with their international human rights obligations. Building on recommendations made by the UNCTAD , the South Centre and other organisations, the Working Group outlines five complementary pathways for States to harness the potential of international investment agreements (IIAs) in encouraging responsible business conduct on the part of investors and holding them accountable for abusing internationally recognised human rights. This session will focus on discussing strategies to achieve a faster and systemic reform of IIAs and the wider investment policy frameworks.

Key objectives of the session:
The session aims to:
  • Highlight the recommendations made by the UN Working Group in its 2021 report;
  • Examine how the reform of IIAs could promote business respect for human rights and strengthen access to remedy for communities affected by investment-related projects;
  • Explore the role of IIAs in promoting responsible investment, supporting an inclusive and sustainable economy, and mitigating climate change; and
  • Discuss the role of various international or regional organisations in supporting States to make structural and systemic reform of the existing international investment regime. 

Key discussion questions:
  • What are the main barriers or challenges in reforming the international investment regime, including the investor-State dispute settlement (ISDS) mechanism?
  • Does the COVID-19 pandemic present an opportunity or bring an additional challenge?
  • What role could IIAs play in facilitating transition to net zero economies and overcoming existing socio-economic inequalities?
  • How is the role of communities affected by investment-related projects in the reform of IIAs, including harnessing their potential to hold investors accountable?
  • What role could organisations such as UNCTAD, South Centre and OECD play to ensure that reform of IIAs is not superficial or symbolic?

Background documents:

Moderators
avatar for Tara Van Ho

Tara Van Ho

Co-President, Global Business and Human Rights Scholars Association
On 1 December, I am joining UK academics in strike action. The UK government’s approach to funding higher education has changed the nature of the industry, leading to greater job insecurity and rising workloads amongst academics. We also face gendered pay inequality, pay devaluation... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Lucía Bárcena

Lucía Bárcena

Project Officer, Transnational Institute
Lucía Bárcena is a researcher at the Transnational Institute (TNI). She is specialized in the trade and investment agenda of the European Union and the international investment regime. At TNI she coordinates trade and investment projects, doing research and analysis, campaigning... Read More →
avatar for Jane S Nalunga

Jane S Nalunga

Executive Director, Southern and Eastern Africa Trade Information and Negotiations Institute (SEATINI) Uganda
Jane Seruwagi Nalunga is an expert on trade, tax and investment related issues. She has more than twenty years of experience in policy research, analysis and advocacy and has authored a number of policy oriented studies and articles. Jane sits on a number of national policy making... Read More →
avatar for Carlos Correa

Carlos Correa

Executive Director, South Centre
Dr. Carlos Correa of Argentina began his term as the Executive Director in July 2018. Formerly, he was the Special Advisor on Trade and Intellectual Property of the South Centre. Dr. Correa is a renowned international authority on intellectual property and technology issues. He has... Read More →
avatar for Hamed El-Kady

Hamed El-Kady

Investment Policy Officer, Senior coordinator, International Investment Agreements Section, UNCTAD
Hamed El-Kady is leading UNCTAD's work on International Investment Agreements (IIAs). He is part of the core team drafting the World Investment Report, and authored a number of UNCTAD’s series on International Investment Policies for Development. He provides technical assistance... Read More →
avatar for Mr Surya Deva

Mr Surya Deva

Chair, UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights
Mr. Surya Deva is a Professor at the Macquarie Law School, University of Macquarie, Sydney. He researches in the areas of business and human rights, India-China constitutional law, international human rights law, and sustainable development. Deva has published extensively in these... Read More →


Wednesday December 1, 2021 9:00am - 10:15am CET
Virtual Plenary room

10:25am CET

Implications of mandatory human rights due diligence for SMEs: a path towards a better protection of persons in most vulnerable situations?

A RECORDING OF THIS SESSION IS AVAILABLE HERE.


Session organized  by the International Trade Center Trade for Sustainable Development department and the UN Working Group on business and human rights
 
Interpretation will be available in English, French and Spanish
 

Short description of the session:
After more than two decades of private governance initiatives to promote corporate social responsibility and responsible business conduct, human rights, labour rights and environmental rights continue to be violated within global supply chains. Particularly vulnerable are the millions of workers lower down the supply chain- including women, migrant and children workers who constitute a ‘hidden’ workforce, remaining constantly at risk. To address this, the European Commission in 2020 announced that it will release the draft of a new mandatory HREDD legislation in line with the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights. The panel will explore implications of this legislation for SMEs in contributing to building a more decent supply chains. It will also reflect on the role of other “smart mix” measures which could complement mandatory HREDD legislation to prevent, mitigate and remediate human rights abuses. Building on ITC’s active work on inclusive trade and SMEs, the session will look at the power of SMEs to bring about transformational change, drive poverty and inequality reduction, and ‘lift up the bar’ for the most at-risk rights-holders to be at the centre of all business efforts.

Objectives:
  • Illustrate the need for ‘smart mix’ approaches to ensure that human rights and environmental standards are uphold in supply chains
  • Explore the risks and opportunities brought by the EU legislation for SMEs in the Global South and demonstrate the crucial role of SMEs in ensuring that basic human rights are protected
  • Explain how ITC, OHCHR and the UN Working Group on business and human rights could support SMEs and provide solutions for human rights-holders to be put at the centre of any business decisions

Key discussion questions:
  • How will the new EU legislation affect SMEs in the Global South?
  • What tools and type of support will be needed to implement the law in a meaningful way, for the workers and  communities on the Global South?
  • How to avoid that the HREDD responsibility and compliance burden is all shifted to SMEs?
  • What opportunity this new legislative context can bring for SMEs?

Background to the discussion
The European Union’s proposed mandatory human rights and environmental due diligence (mHREDD) legislation will have significant consequences for companies and supply chains worldwide. The session will explore the challenges and opportunities of the law for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs). It will discuss how SMEs in the Global South will play a crucial role in ensuring that human and environmental rights are fully respected in the production and manufacturing of commodities reaching the European markets, and adequately promoted in their communities.


Moderators
avatar for Shemina Amarsy

Shemina Amarsy

Sustainability Advisor, International Trade Centre (ITC)
Shemina Amarsy works for the International Trade Center (ITC) as Advisor on Sustainability Standards & Value Chains. ITC is an international organization focused on trade development for developing and transition economies and dedicated to supporting the internationalization of small... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Johnson, Ching-Yin Yeung

Johnson, Ching-Yin Yeung

Regional Campaigner, Clean Clothes Campaign
Johnson Ching-Yin Yeung is a Hong Kong human rights defender, He is Regional Campaigner at the Clean Clothes Campaign, a global network dedicated to improving working conditions and empowering workers in the global garment and sportswear industries. He is Chairperson of the Amnes... Read More →
avatar for Tyler Gillard

Tyler Gillard

Head of Sector Projects and Legal Adviser, OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development)
Tyler Gillard is the Head of Due Diligence and Senior Legal Adviser in the OECD Centre for Responsible Business Conduct. He leads the OECD’s work on due diligence in the financial, textiles, mining & metals, oil & gas and agriculture sectors. Tyler joined the OECD in 2009 to lead... Read More →
avatar for Blake Harwell

Blake Harwell

Senior Policy Advisor, Trade Union Advisory Committee (TUAC) to the OECD
Since 2019 has covered the OECD Responsible Business Conduct policy agenda, including the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises and the OECD Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Business Conduct. Prior to TUAC, Blake worked on international relations for the United States... Read More →
avatar for Cécile Billaux

Cécile Billaux

Head of Unit, European Commission
Cécile Billaux has been working for the European Commission for more than 15 years holding various positions in relation to health, climate, development and trade. She just joined DG DEVCO/INTPA as Head of the Private Sector, Trade and investment Unit. Before that, she worked for... Read More →


Wednesday December 1, 2021 10:25am - 11:40am CET
Virtual Plenary room

11:50am CET

Africa Region: Progress over the next decade of implementing the UNGPs - Regional trends and dialogue

A RECORDING OF THIS SESSION IS AVAILABLE HERE.


Session organized by the UN Working Group on business and human rights and OHCHR

Interpretation will be available in English, French and Spanish


Brief description of the session:
As 2021 marks the 10th anniversary of the UN Guiding Principles on business and human rights (UNGPs), the Forum will look back at achievements and challenges of the first decade of implementation. This year’s Forum will also look ahead to the next decade and discuss ways forward for addressing major current challenges and seizing opportunities for realizing wider and more comprehensive implementation of the UNGPs by all States and businesses.
As part of the regionally focused dialogues of the Forum, this session will focus on how to realize the “UNGPs 10+ roadmap” recommendations in the African region. It will provide an additional opportunity for States to share their own commitments and plans for scaling up action to implement the UNGPs over the next decade, in an exchange with other relevant stakeholders.
In the last 10 years, UNGPs implementation efforts have been uneven across regions. For the next decade, a lot more attention and action will be needed in all regions, including Africa. Allocation of financial resources to support implementation efforts, including a significant increase in capacity-building, political will and opportunities for peer learning, have been identified as key aspects for the road ahead for the continent to develop a more sustainable path forward, that balances the great opportunities offered by the abundant natural resources and need for investments that respect people and environment. This session will discuss current challenges and what is required to address them in the next 10 years of action. Discussions on the way forward will build on recent actions and initiatives taken by various stakeholders aiming to develop effective regulatory frameworks to strengthen prevention of business-related abuses and to ensure accountability for harm caused. This includes initiatives by the African Union, African governments, business and civil society.

Key objectives of the session: 
The session aims to:
  • How to realize the “UNGPs 10+ roadmap” recommendations in the Africa region
  • Consider the role of the African Union, including its Policy on Business and Human Right in taking meaningful action to promote responsible business conduct by States and businesses in line with the UNGPs in the next decade;
  • Share good practices and learn from the experience of ongoing efforts led by governments, business, civil society and other actors aimed at advancing implementation of the UNGPs in  Africa;
  • Discuss how to build on these initiatives to move forward in the next decade of implementation of the UNGPs.

Key questions:
  • Where do gaps and challenges remain in the region? What has not worked to date?
  • What are the key obstacles, drivers, and priorities that need to be addressed to achieve fuller realisation of the UNGPs in Africa?
  • What can be learned from the progress made, in order to find further solutions for advancing implementation of the UNGPs in Africa in the next 10 years?


Moderators
avatar for Githu Muigai

Githu Muigai

member, UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights
Mr. Githu Muigai is current Professor of Public Law, Department of Public Law, University of Nairobi; Chairman at the Council of Legal Education in Kenya; and Senior Partner, Mohammed & Muigai Advocates. He previously served as a Commissioner with the former Constitution of Kenya... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Roselyn Akombe

Roselyn Akombe

Regional Governance and Peacebuilding Coordinator, UNDP Regional Service Center for Africa
Dr. Roselyn Akombe is the Regional Governance and Peacebuilding Coordinator at the UNDP Regional Service Center for Africa in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. With over twenty years of leadership experience at the national, regional and international levels, Dr. Akombe previously worked for... Read More →
avatar for Belkacem Lounes

Belkacem Lounes

Member and coordinator of WGIP of African Commission on Human and Peoples’s Rights, Working Group on indigenous peoples of ACHPR
Belkacem Lounes is Doctor and Professor of Economics, author of numerous reports and press articles on human rights and particularly on IPs' rights, member of the Amazigh World Congress, former member of UN Emrip
avatar for John I. Gbodi

John I. Gbodi

Political Officer, African Union
avatar for Yassine Skandrani

Yassine Skandrani

Advisor to the Minister of Agriculture, Hydraulic Resources and Fisheries of Tunisia in charge of Fisheries and Aquaculture
Following his university studies at the National Agronomic Institute of Tunis in aquatic production and ecosystems, Mr. Yassine Skandrani worked as a teacher-researcher at the Higher Institute of Fisheries and Aquaculture in Bizerte (Tunisia). He was a coordinator and consultant for... Read More →
avatar for Jovina Muchunguzi

Jovina Muchunguzi

Principal Investigation Officer, Commission for Human Rights and Good Governance (CHRAGG)
Principal investigation Officer with 15 years of experience in human rights at the Commission for Human Rights and Good Governance (CHRAGG).CHRAGG’s Focal Point on Business & Human Rights and Environmental ProtectionAn experienced business and human rights practitioner, specialized... Read More →
avatar for Fanilo Rakotovao

Fanilo Rakotovao

Impact Social Director, Axian Group
Ms Fanilo Rakotovao, has been the Social Impact Director of the Axian group for two and a half years. With a Master2 in Marketing and Management, she has more than twenty years of experience in the private sector, including more than eight years in a management position. She spent... Read More →
avatar for Abiodun Baiyewu

Abiodun Baiyewu

Executive Director / Co-Chair, Global Rights / African Coalition for Corporate Accountability



Wednesday December 1, 2021 11:50am - 1:00pm CET
Virtual Plenary room

12:30pm CET

Western European and Other States Group (WEOG): Progress over the next decade of implementing the UNGPs - Regional trends and dialogue
Session organized by the Working Group on Business and Human Rights

A RECORDING OF THIS SESSION IS AVAILABLE HERE.

Brief description of the session:
As the UNGPs turned 10 in June 2021, the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights took stock of the first decade of implementation. The stocktaking highlighted that the UNGPs have led to significant progress by providing a common framework for all stakeholders in managing business-related human rights risks and impacts, but that considerable gaps remain to effectively prevent and remedy harm caused by business, particularly for those in the most vulnerable situations. Meaningful progress over the next 10 years will depend on how these gaps are addressed.

This session provides an opportunity for WEOG States to share their own commitments and plans for scaling-up implementation and effectiveness of the UNGPs in the next decade in the region.
This Forum session is part of the Forum track on trends and challenges in promoting business respect for human rights in the context of each region of the world. In the context of the Working Group’s project ‘Business and human rights: towards a decade of global implementation' (also known as “UNGPs 10+ / Next Decade BHR”), it provides an opportunity for WEOG States to share their own achievements, commitments, innovations, policies and plans. It also offers a chance for WEOG States to respond to the recommendations made by the Working Group as part of the UNGPs 10+ project.

Participants will discuss legal and policy innovations and practices on which progress can be built across the region for strengthening action to address business and human rights issues and promote responsible business conduct in the next decade.

The session will involve presentations by governments that are moving ahead with regulatory and policy innovations including promoting better human rights due diligence, effectively developing, revising and implementing national action plans on business and human rights and strengthening access to effective remedy for victims of business-related human rights abuses. The presentations will be complemented by perspectives from other relevant stakeholders in a spirit of constructive dialogue.

Objectives of the session:
  • Share lessons learned from recent government efforts to drive greater policy coherence on business and human rights issues, and reach a significant scale in the implementation by business enterprises of the corporate responsibility to respect human rights.
  • Facilitate multi-stakeholder dialogue around lessons learned and way forward, including on how to strengthen a race to the top among WEOG States.
  • Reflect on the ways to implement within the region the recommendations made by the Working Group through its UNGPs 10+ project.

Background documents and submissions:

Moderators
avatar for Anita Ramasastry

Anita Ramasastry

Member, Working Group on Business and Human Rights
Ms. Anita Ramasastry is the Roland L. Hjorth Professor of Law and the Director of the Graduate Program in Sustainable International Development at the University of Washington School Of Law. She researches and teaches in the fields of law and development, anti-corruption, international... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Lucie Chatelain

Lucie Chatelain

Advocacy and Litigation Officer, Sherpa
Lucie Chatelain is an Advocacy and Litigation Officer in Sherpa's Globalisation and Human Rights Programme.Sherpa is a French non-governmental organisation which aims to defend victims of economic crimes and fight against new forms of impunity linked to globalisation - through legal... Read More →
avatar for Théo Jaekel

Théo Jaekel

Corporate Responsibility Expert - Business and Human Rights, Ericsson
Legal counsel responsible for human rights at group level, across Ericsson's value chain. This includes issues related to responsible sourcing and the end use of Ericsson technology.
avatar for Elin Wrzoncki

Elin Wrzoncki

Department Director, Human Rights and Business, Danish Institute for Human Rights (DIHR)
Director of Human rights & Business Department at the Danish Institute for Human Rights, Denmark's National Human Rights institution (NHRI). The DIHR works with a variety of actors, including state actors, financial institutions and others to advance implementation of the UNGPs. In... Read More →
avatar for Keith Shannon

Keith Shannon

UK 's Acting Migration and Modern Slavery Envoy
Born in Edinburgh in Scotland, Keith was educated at Craigmount High School and at the University of St Andrews, from which he graduated with an MA (Honours) degree in Modern History with International Relations.Keith joined the Diplomatic Service in 1988. Before his first posting... Read More →
avatar for Wolfgang Bindseil

Wolfgang Bindseil

Head of the Division Business and Human Rights, German Foreign Office
Wolfgang Bindseil is Head of the Division Business and Human Rights in the German Foreign Office since October 2020. On his previous post, he served as Head of Division for Humanitarian Assistance (2019/20), Minister-Counsellor at the German Embassy in Kyiv (2015-19), Deputy Head... Read More →
GN

Guro Nygaard Lysdahl

senior adviser, Norwegian Ministry of Children and Families
avatar for Gerry Cunningham

Gerry Cunningham

Director of the Human Rights Unit, Department of Foreign Affairs of Ireland
Gerry Cunningham is the Director of the Human Rights Unit at the Department of Foreign Affairs. The Human Rights Unit provides the Secretariat to the multi-stakeholder implementation group supporting Ireland’s first National Plan on Business and Human Rights. Gerry was previously... Read More →
avatar for Scott Busby

Scott Busby

Acting Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary, US Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor
Scott Busby serves as Acting Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary in the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor at the U.S. Department of State in Washington, DC, where in addition to the Bureau’s budget and human resources, he oversees the Bureau’s work on East Asia and... Read More →
MP

Marc Pecsteen de Buytswerve

Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the UN in Geneva, Belgium
avatar for H.A. (Hannah) Tijmes

H.A. (Hannah) Tijmes

Deputy Director, Trade Policy and International Economic Governance Department, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, The Netherlands
Involved in Responsible Business Conduct since 2017 and as such responsible for policy development of a smart mix to promote RBC. This includes legislative initiatives, voluntary multi-stakeholder initiatives and the development of an RBC support office for businesses.Ms Tijmes is... Read More →



Wednesday December 1, 2021 12:30pm - 1:45pm CET
Virtual Room 2

1:00pm CET

COVID-19 lessons learnt and moving forward
COVID-19 lessons learnt and moving forward

Organized by the Working Group on Business and Human Rights 

A RECORDING OF THIS SESSION IS AVAILABLE HERE

Brief description of the session:
The session seeks to bring various relevant stakeholders together, including States, businesses, and civil society actors to discuss the consequences and the lessons learnt from the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as how to build back better and to address emerging new global crises on the horizon by forging a new normal based on the globally agreed human rights standards provided by the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs). More particularly, the session will focus on the responsibility of States to create and strengthen an enabling environment for businesses to respect human rights in their operations, even in challenging times, as well as on the responsibility of businesses to develop actions, policies and transformative business models by putting people, human rights and environmental protection at the centre, even in crisis situations. The session will also look at methods of enhancing corporate accountability as a critical means to address emerging crisis situations and prevent future human rights abuses from developing, as well as ways in which effective access to remedy for wrongdoing can be enhanced.
The session intends to help the Working Group to identify essential components, ongoing developments, and key messages to feed into its upcoming report to the UN Human Rights Council which will consider the lessons learned from the COVID-19 pandemic. In relation to this, the Working Group also welcomes written input on the subject matter from all stakeholders.

Key objectives of the session:
  • to gain an overview of the most significant obstacles for States during a crisis situation to ensure an enabling environment for business to respect human rights;
  • to identify opportunities to build back better by States and businesses while ensuring action to prevent business-related human rights abuses and protect the human rights of individuals and communities;
  • to exchange views on how States and business should act to mitigate against the negative human rights impacts of future crises;
  • to illustrate how implementing the UNGPs and effective human rights due diligence policies helped companies to manage risks to people during the pandemic, and when emerging from the pandemic;
  • to consider good practices by companies and how such practices and transformative business models can help businesses to adapt to crisis situations and to implement the UNGPs;
  • to hear the voice and the perspectives of civil society, affected communities and workers about the challenges faced during the pandemic, as well as their views on the recovery process underway in different countries;
  • to understand how access to remedy for business-related human rights impacts deteriorated during the pandemic, and to find solutions for more effective access to remedy schemes at times of crisis.
 
Key questions:
  • How can States support business to respect human rights during, and when emerging from the pandemic? How can States hold business accountable for not respecting human rights during crisis situations?
  • How should businesses adapt to face global challenges, to avoid human rights risks and harms to people and the planet, and to become more resilient and sustainable overall?
  • How can all stakeholders engage in constructive and meaningful dialogue to address business-related human rights abuses in crisis situations, to build alternatives for recovery and to prevent human rights abuses in future crisis situations?
  • Which COVID-19 crisis specific remediation efforts against business-related human rights abuses proved to be the most successful and how can they serve as examples to follow in the future?
Background to the discussion:
The global pandemic and the related severe socioeconomic consequences have been a test for governments and businesses and it is critical not to lower human rights standards. It is vital for both to take a sustainable people-centred path while fighting COVID-19 and any future crises, including climate change, pollution and other human rights challenges stemming from injustices and growing inequalities. Moving forward in the next decade to more effective implementation of the UNGPs requires from both States and businesses a stronger commitment to build back better and to consider transformative business models to better face other crises. The session will build on the recommendations in the Working Group’s Information Note “A Roadmap for Responsible Recovery in Times of Crisis”, and its related statement “Ensuring that business respects human rights during the Covid-19 crisis and beyond: The relevance of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights,” as well as OHCHR’s October 2020 note, “Business and Human Rights in Times of COVID-19.” The session will also serve as important input to the Working Group’s preparations for its report to the Human Rights Council in 2022.

Additional background documents and links:
“A Roadmap for Responsible Recovery in Times of Crisis”, Information Note by the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights
https://www.ohchr.org/Documents/Issues/Business/WG/Responsible-recovery-information-note.pdf

“Ensuring that business respects human rights during the Covid-19 crisis and beyond: The relevance of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights,” Working Group on Business and Human Rights, https://www.ohchr.org/EN/NewsEvents/Pages/DisplayNews.aspx?NewsID=25837&LangID=E

“Business and Human Rights in Times of COVID-19,” Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights,
https://www.ohchr.org/Documents/Issues/Business/BusinessAndHR-COVID19.pdf

Moderators
avatar for Elżbieta Karska

Elżbieta Karska

Vice-chair, UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights
Ms. Elżbieta Karska is a Professor and the Head of the Department of Protection of Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law and the Director of the Institute of International Law, European Union and International Relations at the Faculty of Law and Administration, Cardinal... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Mr Tony Khaw

Mr Tony Khaw

Director, Corporate Social Responsibility Sustainability Office, NXP Semiconductors, Singapore
Tony has well over 20 years of experience in implementing corporate social responsibility programs in manufacturing operations and in the supply chain. Tony joined NXP in Jan 2013 to lead the Corporate Social Responsibility and Compliance function. Tony led the effort to fully develop... Read More →
avatar for Ms Gabriella Rigg Herzog

Ms Gabriella Rigg Herzog

Vice President, Corporate Responsibility and Labor Affairs, United States Council for International Business, USA
Gabriella Rigg Herzog joined the United States Council for International Business (USCIB) in 2017 as Vice President for Corporate Responsibility & Labor Affairs. In this role, she leads USCIB’s policy work and international engagement on responsible business conduct, including corporate... Read More →
avatar for Ms Cecilia Alemany Billorou

Ms Cecilia Alemany Billorou

Deputy Regional Director for the Americas and the Caribbean, UN WOMEN
Cecilia Alemany is the Deputy Regional Director of UN Women for the Americas and the Caribbean, PhD candidate in Economics at Complutense University of Madrid and in Interdisciplinary Gender Studies at UIB. She holds a Master's degree in International Foresight from Paris V and a... Read More →
avatar for Diana Figueroa

Diana Figueroa

Representative and Researcher for Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean, Business & Human Rights Resource Centre
Diana Figueroa Prado is Representative and Researcher for Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean at the Business & Human Rights Resource Centre since August 2019. She leads the work in that region focusing on the support to civil society and communities who defend the rights to... Read More →
avatar for Ms Rosie Monaghan

Ms Rosie Monaghan

KnowTheChain Researcher & Representative, Business and Human Rights Resource Centre
Rosie Monaghan is Researcher and Representative for KnowTheChain at the Business & Human Rights Resource Centre, where she leads the research for the KnowTheChain benchmarks. The benchmarks assess corporate efforts to address forced labour in their supply chains in three high-risk... Read More →
avatar for Ms Tihana Bule

Ms Tihana Bule

Manager, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)
Tihana BULE is a Manager in the OECD Centre for Responsible Business Conduct. She currently leads OECD engagement on RBC in Asia and oversees efforts to promote integration of RBC in several key policy areas such as trade and investment, infrastructure, state-owned enterprises and... Read More →
avatar for Mr Kennedy Igunga

Mr Kennedy Igunga

Managing Director, Biocore Enterprises Limited, Uganda
Kennedy Igunga is an environmental consultant who has over ten years of experience. He is the founder and Managing Director of Biocore Enterprises Limited, a private entity that does environmental consultancy. Kennedy has worked with beverage manufacturing industry for example Crown... Read More →
avatar for Ms Dawn Madahbee-Leach

Ms Dawn Madahbee-Leach

Chairperson, National Indigenous Economic Development Board (NIEB)
Dawn Madahbee Leach is the Chair of the National Indigenous Economic Development Board. She is also a proud member of the Aundeck Omni Kaning First Nation on Manitoulin Island in Central Canada where she has served as a member of her community’s Council. Since 1988, she has been... Read More →
avatar for Thulsi Narayanasamy

Thulsi Narayanasamy

Head of Labour Rights, Business and Human Rights Resource Centre
Thulsi is the Head of Labour Rights at the Business and Human Rights Resource Centre (BHRRC), where she leads the research, policy and strategies to further worker rights in global supply chains, with a particular focus on the structural drivers of labour exploitation in the apparel... Read More →
avatar for Ms Laura Carter

Ms Laura Carter

Assistant Regional Secretary, IndustriALL, Latin-America and the Caribbean Office
Laura Carter is a Assistant Regional Secretary with IndustriALL Global Union’s Latin American office, where she coordinates work in the garment, electronics, energy, mining and base metals sectors as well as on gender issues. IndustriALL Global Union is the global union representing... Read More →
avatar for Alejandra Scampini

Alejandra Scampini

Senior Advocacy Associate of PODER, Uruguay, PODER
Alejandra has been PODER’s Senior Advocacy Associate since 2018. She has contributed to PODER’s growth and consolidation as a regional and international actor in the field of business and human rights from a feminist perspective. She has co founded the Feminists4BindingTreaty... Read More →



Wednesday December 1, 2021 1:00pm - 2:00pm CET
Virtual Plenary room

2:00pm CET

Ensuring business respect for human rights in the political and regulatory sphere and preventing “corporate capture”
 A RECORDING OF THIS SESSION IS AVAILABLE HERE.

Brief description of the session

This panel discussion will explore links between corporate political engagement practices and responsible business conduct. Panelists will discuss how to encourage responsible political engagement, how to prevent undue political influence by businesses—sometimes termed “corporate capture”— and how such activities may undermine and be inconsistent with the corporate responsibility to respect human rights set out by the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (“the Guiding Principles”).

Background
When conducted responsibly, corporate political engagement is a legitimate avenue for the private sector to exercise leverage to improve policymaking and prevent harm. When conducted irresponsibly, however, corporate political engagement can direct political processes away from the public interest and toward the interest of the business entity itself, leading to business-related human rights abuses. Such practices are sometimes referred to as “corporate capture” or “undue corporate political influence.”

This panel discussion will focus on how businesses should account for their responsibility to respect human rights under the Guiding Principles, and how they should exercise human rights due diligence (HRDD) when engaging in a variety of activities in the political sphere – from lobbying to political donations to decisions about whether to speak publicly about policy debates that may impact their employees and other members of their community.

Following introductory remarks from the moderator, panelists will discuss several pressing contemporary human rights issues that are caused or exacerbated by irresponsible corporate political engagement; case studies will be provided from the tobacco, agribusiness, and climate fields. Panelists will describe the specific corporate political engagement tactics that are leading to these negative human rights outcomes; explain how this conduct is inconsistent with the business responsibility to respect human rights under the Guiding Principles; and examine how States have fallen short of their Guiding Principles duties in failing to sufficiently regulate corporate political activities.

Thereafter, panelists will discuss examples of good practice currently utilized by States and businesses around the world to ensure that corporate political engagement remains responsible and does not lead to human rights abuses. Speakers will examine which strategies have been effective in which geographies and recommend measures that should be implemented more widely to engender greater adherence to the Guiding Principles. Potential solutions include pledges made by corporations, actions by the investor community to shape responsible corporate behavior, as well as guidelines for States to avoid conflicts of interest relating to the private sector’s engagement in policy making This will include discussion of how HRDD can identify negative impacts for people and planet resulting from corporate political engagement activities, and how businesses should implement HRDD effectively to prevent and mitigate such impacts.

The primary aim of this session is to identify actionable solutions for both States and businesses. The discussion will focus on recommending concrete steps that State and non-State actors should take to fully implement the Guiding Principles with respect to corporate political engagement, in order to ensure greater coherence between businesses’ commitments to respect human rights and their political and lobbying activities, which are not always in alignment.

Key discussion questions
• How should “corporate capture” and its connection with human rights be defined? What distinguishes legitimate corporate political engagement from undue political influence by businesses which carries human rights risks?
• Are there specific examples of undue corporate influence that has led to government decision-making that negatively impacts human rights? What solutions or measures have been taken to encourage responsible and transparent corporate engagement in global and national policy making?
• What are good practices that businesses can implement to avoid undue political influence or engaging in political activities that negatively impact human rights?
• What are key practical considerations for businesses when creating human rights due diligence processes that will take into account the impacts of their political activities? What does/might this look like in practice, including for global political engagement (e.g., corporate engagement with multilateral institutions or international treaty processes)?

Background reading
• Working Group report: Guiding Principles on Business And Human Rights at 10: Taking stock of the first decade, available at https://www.ohchr.org/Documents/Issues/Business/UNGPs10/Stocktaking-reader-friendly.pdf
• Working Group report: Connecting the business and human rights and the anti-corruption agendas, available at https://undocs.org/A/HRC/44/43
• Working Group information note: A Roadmap for Responsible Recovery in Times of Crisis, available at https://www.ohchr.org/Documents/Issues/Business/WG/Responsible-recovery-information-note.pdf

Speakers
avatar for Anita Ramasastry

Anita Ramasastry

Member, Working Group on Business and Human Rights
Ms. Anita Ramasastry is the Roland L. Hjorth Professor of Law and the Director of the Graduate Program in Sustainable International Development at the University of Washington School Of Law. She researches and teaches in the fields of law and development, anti-corruption, international... Read More →
FD

Fabio Da Silva Gomes

Regional Advisor on Nutrition and Physical Activity, Pan American Health Organization
avatar for Irit Tamir

Irit Tamir

Director, Private Sector Department, Oxfam
avatar for Bobby Ramakant

Bobby Ramakant

Director for Policy and Communications, CNS
avatar for Astrid Puentes

Astrid Puentes

Former Co-Executive Director, Interamerican Association for Environmental Defense, Independent consultant on climate, human rights and environment
TL

Tom Lyon

Faculty Director, Erb Institute for Global Sustainable Enterprise, University of Michigan
avatar for Nora Mardirossian

Nora Mardirossian

Project Lead, Food Sector and Sustainable Development Goals, Columbia Center for Sustainable Investment
BO

Brynn O’Brien

Executive Director, Australasian Centre for Corporate Responsibility
LS

Lisa Sachs

Director, Columbia Center for Sustainable Investment


Wednesday December 1, 2021 2:00pm - 3:15pm CET
Virtual Plenary room

2:00pm CET

Localizing the UNGPs: How the UN is engaging for positive change on the ground
Session organized by OHCHR Business and Human Rights Unit

A RECORDING OF THIS SESSION IS AVAILABLE HERE

Brief description of the session:
The UN Guiding Principles for Business and Human Rights (UNGPs) were conceived as a tool for changing realities on the ground, guiding public policy and corporate actions towards more sustainable business models ---with human rights at the core. States, business enterprises and others actors, including the UN, are playing a critical role in translating the UNGP framework into the policies and practices at country and regional levels.
Over the last decade, various parts of the UN have worked through multiple types of engagement and projects to advance corporate accountability for human rights at the country and regional levels. Together with the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, other UN entities, such as the ILO, UNDP, or UNICEF, as well as the OECD, have joined forces and expanded their work in this area. Specific programmes, such as the joint project Responsible Business Conduct in Latin America and the Caribbean (RBCLAC) or Business and Human Rights-Asia have helped scale up the efforts at the regional level.

Over the last decade, various parts of the UN have worked through multiple types of engagement and projects to advance corporate accountability for human rights at the country and regional levels. Together with the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, other UN entities, such as the ILO, UNDP, or UNICEF, as well as the OECD, have joined forces and expanded their work in this area. Specific programmes, such as the joint project Responsible Business Conduct in Latin America and the Caribbean (RBCLAC) or Business and Human Rights-Asia have helped scale up the efforts at the regional level.

Looking back at the past decade, we see that the UNGPs have led to significant progress by providing a common framework for all stakeholders in managing business-related human rights risks and impacts. Yet, more efforts are needed for greater uptake and coherent implementation with respect to ensuring better protection and prevention of adverse human rights impacts. As we celebrate the 10th anniversary of the UNGPs, the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights articulated a “Roadmap for the Next Decade” calling to raise ambition and increase the pace of implementation, to improve coherence and create greater impact. The Roadmap for the Next Decade sets out forward-looking recommendations, key goals and actions and supporting actions to be taken by States and businesses as well as other key stakeholders for the road ahead.

This session offers an opportunity to look at the role the UN in realizing UNGPs implementation and ensuring that tangible results are achieved in the coming years, for affected individuals and communities, and for contributing to a socially sustainable globalization.

Objectives of the session:
  • Reflect on the progress achieved after a decade of UNGP implementation based on the experience of UN practitioners (what has worked and why)?
  • Assess the unique role that the UN and other international actors can play to advance the business and human rights agenda on the ground.
  • Share views on actions needed to scale up progress and greater impact at country and regional levels.



Moderators
avatar for Adrienne Gardaz Cuendet

Adrienne Gardaz Cuendet

Adviser Business and Human Rights, Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights
Adrienne Gardaz Cuendet is Adviser on Business and Human Rights at the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR). She guides the strategy the strategy of the Business and Human Rights Unit and leads programmes for implementation in the field. In this role, she serves... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Tyler Gillard

Tyler Gillard

Head of Sector Projects and Legal Adviser, OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development)
Tyler Gillard is the Head of Due Diligence and Senior Legal Adviser in the OECD Centre for Responsible Business Conduct. He leads the OECD’s work on due diligence in the financial, textiles, mining & metals, oil & gas and agriculture sectors. Tyler joined the OECD in 2009 to lead... Read More →
avatar for Livio Sarandrea

Livio Sarandrea

Global Adviser, Business and Human Rights, UNDP
Mr. Livio Sarandrea, is UNDP’s Global Lead on Business and Human Rights and the Team leader of: “Business and Human Rights in Asia promoting Responsible Business practices through regional partnerships (B+HR Asia)”. A Human Rights lawyer with 20 years of field experience in... Read More →
avatar for Yukiko Arai

Yukiko Arai

Director, ILO Country Office for Argentina
Yukiko Arai is the Director of the ILO Country Office for Argentina based in Buenos Aires. Yukiko joined the ILO in January 2001. Since then, she has worked as a specialist in child labor, poverty reduction and sustainable and responsible business, and has led operations in the Asia-Pacific... Read More →
avatar for Katia Chirizzi

Katia Chirizzi

Deputy Representative of the Regional Office for South East Asia, OHCHR
Ms. Katia Chirizzi is the Deputy Regional Representative of the OHCHR Regional Office for South-East Asia, since 2015. Prior to this, Ms. Chirizzi worked with OHCHR in several capacities, in Nepal, Sri Lanka, the Maldives, and in Geneva. Before joining OHCHR, Ms. Chirizzi worked with... Read More →
avatar for Teresa Moll de Alba

Teresa Moll de Alba

Senior Manager Global Operations, Global Compact Latin America and Caribbean
Teresa Moll de Alba es la directora para América Latina y el Caribe del Pacto Global de las Naciones Unidas. Durante 10 años ocupó la dirección ejecutiva de Sumarse- Red del Pacto Global Panamá, la mayor plataforma multistakeholder del país, con más de 250 empresas, ONG, gremios... Read More →
avatar for Robert Vaughan

Robert Vaughan

Human Rights Officer (Focal point for Climate and Business and Human Rights in the Pacific), The Office of UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR)
Robert Vaughan is a human rights officer at the United Nations Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), with over 13 years experience in human rights. Robert specializes in a unique blend of climate, environment, business and human rights.As a human... Read More →
avatar for Melissa Ortiz

Melissa Ortiz

Responsible Business Conduct in Latin America and the Caribbean (RBCLAC), OHCHR/Mexico
Actualmente es Oficial de Derechos Humanos en la Oficina del Alto Comisionado de Naciones Unidas para Derechos Humanos en México. Desde ahí participa como responsable del Proyecto Conducta Empresarial Responsable en América Latina y el Caribe. Forma parte de la Unidad de Género... Read More →
avatar for Chafi Bakari

Chafi Bakari

Team Leader, AU Engagement, UN Human Rights (OHCHR)-Eastern Africa Regional Office


Wednesday December 1, 2021 2:00pm - 3:15pm CET
Virtual Room 2

3:25pm CET

Confronting racism: using the Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights to support transformative action
A RECORDING OF THIS SESSION IS AVAILABLE HERE.

Overall objective
This session will examine what the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs) expect from business with regard to meaningful action to prevent and address racism and how the business and human rights agenda can be leveraged to confront racism.

Brief description of the session
As the UNGPs turned 10 in June 2021, the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights mandated by the Human Rights Council to promote dissemination and implementation of the UNGPs worldwide, took stock of the first decade of implementation. The stocktaking highlighted that the UNGPs have led to significant progress by providing a common framework for all stakeholders in managing business-related human rights risks and impacts. Yet, considerable challenges remain when it comes to coherent implementation. Among major long-standing human rights challenges that continue to exist in all societies, racism, intolerance and discrimination have been amplified further during the COVID-19 crisis. As some countries saw public and media attention to the challenge of racial discrimination in the wake of high-profile cases of abuse, many companies and business leaders stood up publicly in support of anti-racism. These are welcome moves, but to tackle racism more effectively in all societies, much more is needed.

The failure to address racism seriously undermines both the promise of business and human rights generally - that is to provide a framework to prevent and remedy abuses by businesses of internationally recognized human rights - and specifically the recognized need to address intersectional harms experienced by individuals, especially women and people with non-binary identities, from all racial and ethnic backgrounds.
The UNGPs require companies to assess the risk that they cause, contribute to, or are directly linked to, human rights abuse, including potential or actual involvement with racial discrimination by their products, services or operations, throughout their business relationships. This means, for example, that for companies it is not enough to commit to equality and diversity initiatives, if these are not accompanied by a foundational shift in their human rights due diligence operations and practices, which are able to acknowledge and address legacies of trade in enslaved Africans and colonialism. Similarly, while there are many corporate policy commitments to embrace diversity within the workforce, companies have been less forthcoming when making diversity and inclusion a reality on the ground.

Background

An under explored angle to date is the way in which mainstream business can be leveraged to a greater scale by having businesses paying attention to the issue as part of their responsibility to respect human rights under the UNGPs. The economic prosperity of modern economies undeniably rests upon the foundations of colonialism, and the transatlantic slave trade and exploitation of generations of enslaved people of African descent, which remains to be fully recognized and addressed. However, the persistence of racial discrimination by, and benefiting businesses continues to manifest in many ways. For example, workers of colour are those at highest risk of exploitation in labour markets, including within industries in the digital economy. Likewise, large-scale development projects, the operations of many companies within the extractives industries, and the development of real estate investment projects often have racially discriminatory impacts on the communities that experience abuse because of such projects. Women of colour are in an even more precarious position, with racism often compounded by other intersecting forms of discrimination, such as sexism, misogyny, homophobia and transphobia.

The climate crisis also has a disproportionate impact on the rights of people of African descent, indigenous peoples and other communities of colour, which is tied to historical and structural racism. In many parts of the world, environmental racism poses a serious and disproportionate threat to the enjoyment of human rights of people of African descent, including the right to a safe, clean and healthy environment. At the same time, those seeking to defend their human rights in relation to climate change and the right to a safe, clean and healthy environment face unacceptable levels of violence, threats and intimidation.



Moderators
avatar for Fernanda Hopenhaym

Fernanda Hopenhaym

member, UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights
Ms. Fernanda Hopenhaym is Co-Executive Director at Project on Organizing, Development, Education and Research (PODER), an organization in Latin America dedicated to corporate accountability. Since 2006 Ms. Hopenhaym has been working on issues related to human rights and financial... Read More →

Speakers
MM

Miriam Miranda

Coordinadora General, Organización Fraternal Negra de Honduras (OFRANEH)
avatar for Jena Martin

Jena Martin

Professor of Law West, Virginia University
Professor Martin is a Professor of Law at West Virginia University. Her research and scholarship is in the area of business and human rights, specifically examining how traditional frameworks - such as securities regulation - can be applied.
avatar for Paul Lalli

Paul Lalli

Global VP, Human Rights, The Coca-Cola Company
Paul Lalli is The Coca-Cola Company's Global VP of Human Rights, overseeing its ethical supply chain initiatives, stakeholder engagement, and the imbedding of a human rights lens into business operations and strategy.   He serves as the Co-Chair of the Consumer Goods Forum Human... Read More →
avatar for Sriram Madhusoodanan

Sriram Madhusoodanan

International Policy Lead, The Gulf Coast Center for Law & Policy (GCCLP)
Sriram Madhusoodanan is International Policy Lead for the Gulf Coast Center for Law & Policy (GCCLP) where he works to build bridges and connection between communities in the U.S. Gulf South and the Global South and amplify calls for climate reparations. GCCLP advances structural... Read More →
avatar for Barbara G Reynolds

Barbara G Reynolds

Member, Working Group of Experts on People of African Descent
Ms. Reynolds served as Deputy Vice-Chancellor at the University of Guyana from August 2014 to September 2019. Prior to this, Ms Reynolds was Head of Education for Save the Children UK, having spent the previous two decades with UNICEF. Ms Reynolds began her professional career as... Read More →
avatar for Alexandra Montgomery

Alexandra Montgomery

Programme Director, Anistia Internacional Brazil



Wednesday December 1, 2021 3:25pm - 4:40pm CET
Virtual Plenary room

3:25pm CET

Responsible business in the defence sector
Session organized by the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights

A RECORDING OF THIS SESSION IS AVAILABLE HERE

Brief description of the session
This panel discussion session of the UN Forum on Business and Human Rights will focus on responsible business conduct in the defence sector. Panelists will explore how States and defence companies currently address human rights risks associated with defence sector products, examine the scope for enhanced ESG and sustainability efforts in the defence sector, and discuss how States and businesses can apply the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (“the Guiding Principles”) going forward to prevent, mitigate, and remedy business-related human rights abuses that may be connected to the defence sector.

Background
As the UN Charter notes, all nations have a legitimate right to self-defence in the face of attack; it is the sovereign right and responsibility of governments to provide security, in conformity with the rule of law. As such, producers of defence equipment play an important role in providing states with the necessary technology to execute their defence-related duties. At the same time, the inherently lethal nature of the equipment produced by the defense sector carries intrinsic risk of serious human rights abuses, particularly when exported into proven contexts of human rights abuse. This panel discussion will examine how the Guiding Principles can be used as a framework to reconcile these two dynamics in a way that enables the responsible export of defence sector products and addresses the heightened risk of human rights abuses connected to those products.

The primary aim of this session is to identify actionable steps that States and defence sector businesses can take to mitigate, prevent, and remedy human rights abuses.

Background reading
Working Group report: Guiding Principles on Business And Human Rights at 10: Taking stock of the first decade, available at https://www.ohchr.org/Documents/Issues/Business/UNGPs10/Stocktaking-reader-friendly.pdf
Working Group report: Business, human rights and conflict-affected regions: towards heightened action, available at https://undocs.org/en/A/75/212

Speakers
avatar for Anita Ramasastry

Anita Ramasastry

Member, Working Group on Business and Human Rights
Ms. Anita Ramasastry is the Roland L. Hjorth Professor of Law and the Director of the Graduate Program in Sustainable International Development at the University of Washington School Of Law. She researches and teaches in the fields of law and development, anti-corruption, international... Read More →
AC

Alejandro Celorio

Head of the Legal Department, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Mexico
PW

Patrick Wilcken

Deputy Programme Director, Head of Business, Security, and Human Rights, International Secretariat, Amnesty International
I am currently exploring the responsibilities of defence companies, using the UNGP framework. My latest report can be found at: https://www.amnesty.org/download/Documents/ACT3008932019ENGLISH.PDF
avatar for Ara Marcen Naval

Ara Marcen Naval

Head of Advocacy Defence and Security, Transparency International
avatar for Spencer Chilvers

Spencer Chilvers

Head of Export Control Policy, Rolls-Royce plc


Wednesday December 1, 2021 3:25pm - 4:40pm CET
Virtual Room 2

4:50pm CET

Closing Plenary
A RECORDING OF THIS SESSION IS AVAILABLE HERE.

Moderators
avatar for Fernanda Hopenhaym

Fernanda Hopenhaym

member, UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights
Ms. Fernanda Hopenhaym is Co-Executive Director at Project on Organizing, Development, Education and Research (PODER), an organization in Latin America dedicated to corporate accountability. Since 2006 Ms. Hopenhaym has been working on issues related to human rights and financial... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Asako Okai

Asako Okai

UN Assistant Secretary General, UNDP Assistant Administrator and Director of the Crisis Bureau, UNDP
Ms. Asako Okai officially began her role as UNDP's Assistant Administrator and Director for the Crisis Bureau on August 22, 2018. In this role, she leads UNDP's corporate crisis-related work and drives UNDP's vision and priorities for crisis prevention, response, and recovery.Ms... Read More →
avatar for Roberto Suárez Santos

Roberto Suárez Santos

Secretary-General, International Organisation of Employers (IOE)
Roberto Suárez Santos was appointed Secretary-General of the International Organisation of Employers (IOE) on 26 October 2018, having held the post of Deputy Secretary-General since December 2012.Prior to joining the IOE, Roberto was ILO Programme Director for the promotion of youth... Read More →
avatar for Benito Calixto Guzman

Benito Calixto Guzman

Co-president, Indigenous Caucus
He is a Quechua from the Pasco region (Peru). He is an indigenous leader for the defense, promotion and effective implementation of indigenous communities’ rights in general and communities affected by mining.He is currently the General Coordinator of the Andean Coordinator of Indigenous... Read More →
avatar for John W. H. Denton AO

John W. H. Denton AO

Secretary General, International Chamber of Commerce (ICC)- The World Business Organization
John W.H. Denton AO is the Secretary General of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC). He is a global business leader and international advisor on policy and a legal expert on international trade and investment.He is also a Board member of the United Nations Global Compact and... Read More →
avatar for Caroline Rees

Caroline Rees

President, Shift
Caroline Rees is President and Co-Founder of Shift. Shift is a non-profit mission-driven organization that works across all continents and sectors to challenge assumptions, push boundaries, and redefine corporate practice, in order to build a world where business gets done with respect... Read More →
avatar for Tara Van Ho

Tara Van Ho

Co-President, Global Business and Human Rights Scholars Association
On 1 December, I am joining UK academics in strike action. The UK government’s approach to funding higher education has changed the nature of the industry, leading to greater job insecurity and rising workloads amongst academics. We also face gendered pay inequality, pay devaluation... Read More →
avatar for Stela Luz Andreatta Herschmann

Stela Luz Andreatta Herschmann

Climate policy specialist, Climate Observatory
Stela has a master's degree in Business Administration from EBAPE/FGV with an emphasis on Government, Institutions and Public Policies and a master's degree in Environmental Law and Policies from Duke University. She is a specialist in Environmental Law from PUC-Rio and has worked... Read More →
avatar for Elżbieta Karska

Elżbieta Karska

Vice-chair, UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights
Ms. Elżbieta Karska is a Professor and the Head of the Department of Protection of Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law and the Director of the Institute of International Law, European Union and International Relations at the Faculty of Law and Administration, Cardinal... Read More →
avatar for Anita Ramasastry

Anita Ramasastry

Member, Working Group on Business and Human Rights
Ms. Anita Ramasastry is the Roland L. Hjorth Professor of Law and the Director of the Graduate Program in Sustainable International Development at the University of Washington School Of Law. She researches and teaches in the fields of law and development, anti-corruption, international... Read More →
avatar for Githu Muigai

Githu Muigai

member, UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights
Mr. Githu Muigai is current Professor of Public Law, Department of Public Law, University of Nairobi; Chairman at the Council of Legal Education in Kenya; and Senior Partner, Mohammed & Muigai Advocates. He previously served as a Commissioner with the former Constitution of Kenya... Read More →
avatar for Mr Surya Deva

Mr Surya Deva

Chair, UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights
Mr. Surya Deva is a Professor at the Macquarie Law School, University of Macquarie, Sydney. He researches in the areas of business and human rights, India-China constitutional law, international human rights law, and sustainable development. Deva has published extensively in these... Read More →



Wednesday December 1, 2021 4:50pm - 6:00pm CET
Virtual Plenary room
 
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