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HUMAN RIGHTS DUE DILIGENCE
HRDD is increasingly seen as a legal obligation (soft law). The UN Guiding Principles for Business and Human Rights (UNGP), the most comprehensive international framework in effect since 2011 as a way of guiding the behavior of businesses in contexts of serious human rights challenges, is based on three basic principles: state duty to protect human rights, corporate responsibility to respect human rights, and a shared responsibility to provide remedy in case of violations.
In Norway, the Government has formally expressed ‘its expectation’ to companies fully or partly owned by the State that they carry out Human Rights Due Diligence.Investors increasingly demand greater transparency for company’s performance in line with Environmental, Social and Governance criteria. Civil society and Consumers increasingly look at how companies address human rights impacts in their purchasing decisions. Media, and especially investigative journalists worldwide are increasingly identifying and ‘naming and shaming’ companies that are alleged to have violated human rights principles.
HRDD is a key instrument to put in place preventive measures to avoid falling into the pitfalls, and to promote the opportunities, as mentioned above. Carrying out Human Rights Due Diligence is simply ‘good for business’!
Human rights due diligence covers the adverse human rights impacts that the company may cause or contribute to through its own activities, or which may be indirectly linked to its operations, products or services by its business relationships. A human rights due diligence consists of an in-depth human rights impact assessment, with the purpose to identify, prevent, mitigate and account for how a company addresses potentially adverse human rights impacts. This is followed up by steps to identify appropriate action in response to the findings of the impact assessment, integrating the findings back into overall organizational policies and procedures.
A human rights due diligence will vary in complexity with the size of the company and the nature and context of its operations. Recognizing that risks may change over time, a human rights due diligence is an ongoing risk management process.
Preventing human rights violations or improving human rights conditions means integrating respect for human rights at all levels of the company and the business operation, including the establishment of complaints mechanisms.
RBA has a strategic partnership with Enact Sustainable Strategies on Human Rights
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RBA Human Rights Due Diligence Services
Assist to develop Human Rights policies and anchor the Human Rights commitment at strategic level (board, management and operations).
Overall assessment, starting by scoping for "salient risks" (scope, scale, adversity) to identify and prioritize human rights risks in any given national, local, or sector level with regards to on-going or planned business operations, supply chains and specific substances/raw material.
Advice on actions to prevent or mitigate risks.
Advice on applicable remedies in the company´s own operations and in the supply chain, here-under the set-up of grievance mechanisms (whistle-blowing) and facilitation of local stakeholder engagement processes.
Setting up ongoing monitoring systems and systems for internal and external communication. Identification of human rights concerns applicable for reporting.
Training/knowledge sharing on human rights implications of own operations and in supply chains.