Governments must make progress on UN Human Rights Treaty : ITUC statement
Dhaka October 25 2021 :
A key intergovernmental meeting in Geneva this week needs to make substantive progress towards a UN Treaty on Business and Human Rights, following a joint statement by UN human rights experts calling for a level playing field globally for responsible business conduct.
The key priorities for the trade union movement are that:
The unions welcome, in the third draft, a better overall integration of gender issues, an acknowledgement of the importance of health and safety in the drive towards sustainable development, a reference to the right to a safe, clean, healthy, and sustainable environment and a reference to obligations of business enterprises to respect human rights, among others.
“We have an opportunity to build on the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights to hold businesses accountable to their obligations under internationally recognised human rights, including the fundamental principles and rights at work. We will highlight the clear, distinctive and disproportionate impact of business-related human rights abuses on workers, trade unions, communities, and the environment and the need for unambiguous language on liability and a clear mechanism for enforcement and for victims to access remedy.
“We call on all actors, including States and the business community, to participate in the process in good faith and to constructively negotiate a legally binding instrument that respects international rule of law, ends corporate impunity, protects workers and communities and safeguards the planet,” said Sharan Burrow.
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