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Briefing

11 Oct 2021

Hearing the human: Ensuring due diligence legislation effectively amplifies the voices of those affected by irresponsible business

ProDESC

Business enterprises must… be obliged to consult with defenders under the EU initiative... Now is the time for the EU to give new life to its founding principles by delivering a strong law that could help reduce the number of lives lost in defence of human rights.
Mary Lawlor, UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders

The EU’s Sustainable Corporate Governance Initiative, including mandatory human rights and environmental due diligence, offers an opportunity to prioritise environmental protection, human rights and long-term business sustainability, including the safety of human rights defenders.

To support the inclusion and safety of HRDs in the EU’s Sustainable Corporate Governance Initiative, Business & Human Rights Resource Centre, Front Line Defenders, Indigenous Peoples Rights International & ProDESC, with the support of the ALLIED coalition, held regional online workshops in Africa, Asia and Latin America. This report provides analysis and recommendations formulated on the basis of two workshops and a roundtable, including views expressed by over 60 participants from diverse civil society organisations and communities.

Further resources

Human rights defenders and civic freedoms

HRDs’ work is essential to the business and human rights movement because of their critical importance for ensuring corporate responsibility and accountability. Yet, attacks on them are growing. This hub brings together Explore news, interviews and resources on land, environmental and labour defenders working on business-related issues.

Mandatory due diligence

Latest news on mandatory human rights due diligence, national and regional developments, public company statements in support of mHRDD, guidance for companies and governments, and examples of company implementation of human rights due diligence.

In the line of fire: Increased legal protection needed as attacks against business & human rights defenders mount in 2020

We tracked 604 attacks against HRDs focused on business-related activities in 2020. Our data and case studies reveal increased attacks call for increased legal protection for those defending human rights.