It is our belief at ChangeMaker.land that policy makers in the European Union, and around the world, need to commit to the effective safeguarding of fundamental rights. As we focus on positive impact in business, we specifically see that they have a duty to create a binding treaty to hold companies responsible for their activities, protect human rights and the environment. There are multiple recommendations and guidelines such as the:
Many companies have multi and bilateral investors and customers throughout the world. From the smallest little cacao farming company like BLYSS, to large cosmetic multinationals that we work with, almost all aspects of modern business have geopolitical and commercial interdependencies. An international treaty regulating transnational business activities is necessary to truly protect human rights.
An international treaty will establish an a good type of legal framework to:
In 2014, an international treaty was started by Ecuador and South Africa within the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) to serve as a legally binding document to regulate activities of transnational corporations and other businesses to protect fundamental rights.
“Ecuador will present elements of the UN Treaty at the next working group meeting, which will take place from 23-27. October 2017 in Geneva, Switzerland.” And, we are looking forward to the results of this!
They can begin to proactively take part in the process and begin to support the treaty overall.
For example, the EU has started to implement other measures to protect fundamental rights: in 2016, it passed a regulation on “conflict minerals” that aims to stop the financing of armed groups and human rights abuses through trade in minerals from conflict areas. “This regulation shows the EU’s potential to promote human rights internationally, if sufficient political will is invested.”
As ChangeMakers, we can do that ourselves by both supporting regulatory and commercial projects to achieve it, while also calling out the details on a daily basis.