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Human Rights

Standards covering a firm's obligations to prevent violations of specific human rights of its stakeholders during routine operations.

Examples: LCE/SME 

United Nations Global Compact


Voluntary Principles for Security and Human Rights


Reebok Reebok has done leading edge work on a company's responsibility for managing in environments with Human Rights abuses.

Sample codes of companies with policy statements referring to human rights

The Girls Next Door Under the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000 -- the first U.S. law to recognize that people trafficked against their will are victims of a crime, not illegal aliens -- the U.S. government rates other countries' records on human trafficking and can apply economic sanctions on those that aren't making efforts to improve them. Another piece of legislation, the Protect Act, which Bush signed into law last year, makes it a crime for any person to enter the U.S., or for any citizen to travel abroad, for the purpose of sex tourism involving children. The sentences are severe: up to 30 years' imprisonment for each offense.

Business and Human Rights Resource Centre

Office of the High Commissioner on Human Rights. "The International Bill of Human Rights." UNHCHR Web site.

Norms on the Responsibilities of Transnational Corporations and Other Business Enterprises with Regard to Human Rights, U.N. Doc. E/CN.4/Sub.2/2003/12/Rev.2 (2003). (These are draft proposals of a working group. For official commentary on them, click here. For external commentary, click here.)

Human rights norms for businesses Although the human rights norms for businesses, drafted by the Sub-Commission on the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights, faced opposition from some countries, Amnesty International is very pleased to note that the issue of corporate responsibility for human rights is now firmly on the Commission's agenda. In a decision, adopted by consensus, the Commission requested the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights to compile a report setting out the scope and legal status of existing initiatives and standards on business responsibilities with regard to human rights, and to consider the draft norms in this process. Amnesty International continues to be firmly supportive of the norms as a framework for informing the human rights responsibilities of business enterprises and welcomes the Commission's acknowledgement that standards on business responsibilities in relation to human rights need to be strengthened.


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