There is a need to quantify and measure human rights impacts in a meaningful, robust way. This should entail (1) measuring data that provides a stronger indicator of actual impacts on people such as freedom of association, ratio of full employees to contract workers, CEO-worker pay ratios, and gender and racial equity and pay gaps, (2) measuring underlying structural factors that can be determiners of human rights risks, such as business model, corporate culture and governance and (3) moving away from metrics that can generate perverse incentives not to find issues (Caroline Rees and Robert G. Eccles)

Week of 14 September 2020 There is a need to quantify and measure human rights impacts in a meaningful, robust way. This should entail (1) measuring data that provides a stronger indicator of actual impacts on people such as freedom of association, ratio of full employees to contract workers, CEO-worker pay ratios, and gender and … Continue reading There is a need to quantify and measure human rights impacts in a meaningful, robust way. This should entail (1) measuring data that provides a stronger indicator of actual impacts on people such as freedom of association, ratio of full employees to contract workers, CEO-worker pay ratios, and gender and racial equity and pay gaps, (2) measuring underlying structural factors that can be determiners of human rights risks, such as business model, corporate culture and governance and (3) moving away from metrics that can generate perverse incentives not to find issues (Caroline Rees and Robert G. Eccles)

Investor and civil society pressure played a significant role in Rio Tinto’s removal of its CEO and two other senior leaders following the company’s reliance on a legal permit to destroy sacred Aboriginal sites in Australia; this outcome—which impacts the top leadership of one of the largest mining companies in the world—is a powerful indicator of a growing shift towards investors holding companies accountable for their impacts on human rights and demonstrates to senior leadership that legal compliance is insufficient where the laws fall short of international standards

Week of 14 September 2020 Investor and civil society pressure played a significant role in Rio Tinto’s removal of its CEO and two other senior leaders following the company’s reliance on a legal permit to destroy sacred Aboriginal sites in Australia; this outcome—which impacts the top leadership of one of the largest mining companies in … Continue reading Investor and civil society pressure played a significant role in Rio Tinto’s removal of its CEO and two other senior leaders following the company’s reliance on a legal permit to destroy sacred Aboriginal sites in Australia; this outcome—which impacts the top leadership of one of the largest mining companies in the world—is a powerful indicator of a growing shift towards investors holding companies accountable for their impacts on human rights and demonstrates to senior leadership that legal compliance is insufficient where the laws fall short of international standards

For the first time, a U.S. regulatory body has found that climate change poses serious emerging risks to the US financial system, and calls on policymakers to take urgent and decisive steps to address these risks, including by implementing economy-wide carbon pricing, mandatory corporate climate-risk disclosure, and standardized reporting on risks and emissions (Subcommittee on Climate-Related Market Risk of the Committee on Market Risk Advisory, U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission)

Week of 14 September 2020 For the first time, a U.S. regulatory body has found that climate change poses serious emerging risks to the US financial system, and calls on policymakers to take urgent and decisive steps to address these risks, including by implementing economy-wide carbon pricing, mandatory corporate climate-risk disclosure, and standardized reporting on … Continue reading For the first time, a U.S. regulatory body has found that climate change poses serious emerging risks to the US financial system, and calls on policymakers to take urgent and decisive steps to address these risks, including by implementing economy-wide carbon pricing, mandatory corporate climate-risk disclosure, and standardized reporting on risks and emissions (Subcommittee on Climate-Related Market Risk of the Committee on Market Risk Advisory, U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission)

New evidence shows that revenue from a Myanmar conglomerate (Myanma Economic Holdings – MEHL) finances the Myanmar military and the atrocities committed, including the recent genocide against the Rohingya Muslims. Companies that have business relationships with MEHL are viewed as financing the military’s human rights violations and – faced with MEHL’s secrecy and lack of leverage – have no other option than to disengage responsibly (Amnesty International)

Week of 7 September 2020 New evidence shows that revenue from a Myanmar conglomerate (Myanma Economic Holdings – MEHL) finances the Myanmar military and the atrocities committed, including the recent genocide against the Rohingya Muslims. Companies that have business relationships with MEHL are viewed as financing the military’s human rights violations and – faced with … Continue reading New evidence shows that revenue from a Myanmar conglomerate (Myanma Economic Holdings – MEHL) finances the Myanmar military and the atrocities committed, including the recent genocide against the Rohingya Muslims. Companies that have business relationships with MEHL are viewed as financing the military’s human rights violations and – faced with MEHL’s secrecy and lack of leverage – have no other option than to disengage responsibly (Amnesty International)

When operating in conflict-affected areas, companies have a responsibility to conduct heightened human rights due diligence which includes seeking out conflict-sensitive resources and advisors, incorporating atrocity prevention and conflict prevention tools into due diligence, developing conflict-sensitive operational-level grievance mechanisms, actively engaging local communities and groups, applying a gender-responsive approach, and actively participating in truth and reconciliation processes (UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights)

Week of 7 September 2020 When operating in conflict-affected areas, companies have a responsibility to conduct heightened human rights due diligence which includes seeking out conflict-sensitive resources and advisors, incorporating atrocity prevention and conflict prevention tools into due diligence, developing conflict-sensitive operational-level grievance mechanisms, actively engaging local communities and groups, applying a gender-responsive approach, and … Continue reading When operating in conflict-affected areas, companies have a responsibility to conduct heightened human rights due diligence which includes seeking out conflict-sensitive resources and advisors, incorporating atrocity prevention and conflict prevention tools into due diligence, developing conflict-sensitive operational-level grievance mechanisms, actively engaging local communities and groups, applying a gender-responsive approach, and actively participating in truth and reconciliation processes (UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights)

As companies and investors seek to scale up climate action to meet the targets of the 2015 Paris Agreement, green bonds have become prevalent tools to finance investments in climate mitigation solutions. Yet, they exclude companies and activities with some of the highest greenhouse gas emissions levels. Proposed ‘transition bonds’ can be leveraged to help large emitters reimagine themselves in a world that has renewed priorities for greenhouse gas management and climate resilience (Climate Bonds Initiative and Credit Suisse)

Week of 7 September 2020 As companies and investors seek to scale up climate action to meet the targets of the 2015 Paris Agreement, green bonds have become prevalent tools to finance investments in climate mitigation solutions. Yet, they exclude companies and activities with some of the highest greenhouse gas emissions levels. Proposed ‘transition bonds’ … Continue reading As companies and investors seek to scale up climate action to meet the targets of the 2015 Paris Agreement, green bonds have become prevalent tools to finance investments in climate mitigation solutions. Yet, they exclude companies and activities with some of the highest greenhouse gas emissions levels. Proposed ‘transition bonds’ can be leveraged to help large emitters reimagine themselves in a world that has renewed priorities for greenhouse gas management and climate resilience (Climate Bonds Initiative and Credit Suisse)

Biodiversity loss is a systemic risk, and the unprecedented loss of biodiversity places more than half of the world’s gross domestic product (US$44 trillion) at risk. Institutional investors are urged to take action, including by (1) promoting investor awareness, commitments and initiatives; (2) investing in companies that protect biodiversity; (3) engaging with companies to promote biodiversity objectives; (4) advocating for strong biodiversity regulation; and (5) requesting meaningful data on biodiversity risks and impacts (Principles for Responsible Investment)

Week of 31 August 2020 Biodiversity loss is a systemic risk, and the unprecedented loss of biodiversity places more than half of the world’s gross domestic product (US$44 trillion) at risk. Institutional investors are urged to take action, including by (1) promoting investor awareness, commitments and initiatives; (2) investing in companies that protect biodiversity; (3) … Continue reading Biodiversity loss is a systemic risk, and the unprecedented loss of biodiversity places more than half of the world’s gross domestic product (US$44 trillion) at risk. Institutional investors are urged to take action, including by (1) promoting investor awareness, commitments and initiatives; (2) investing in companies that protect biodiversity; (3) engaging with companies to promote biodiversity objectives; (4) advocating for strong biodiversity regulation; and (5) requesting meaningful data on biodiversity risks and impacts (Principles for Responsible Investment)

The U.S. Customs and Border Protection Agency issued its first penalty (of $575,000) against a company (Pure Circle) for importing goods (stevia leaves) into the U.S. processed in China with prison labour; we are seeing growing use of Section 307 of the U.S. Tariff Act to push companies to remove forced labour from their supply chains, with recent scrutiny on goods produced with cotton from the Xinjiang region of China

Week of 31 August 2020 The U.S. Customs and Border Protection Agency issues its first penalty (of $575,000) against a company (Pure Circle) for importing goods (stevia leaves) into the U.S. processed in China with prison labour; we are seeing growing use of Section 307 of the U.S. Tariff Act to push companies to remove … Continue reading The U.S. Customs and Border Protection Agency issued its first penalty (of $575,000) against a company (Pure Circle) for importing goods (stevia leaves) into the U.S. processed in China with prison labour; we are seeing growing use of Section 307 of the U.S. Tariff Act to push companies to remove forced labour from their supply chains, with recent scrutiny on goods produced with cotton from the Xinjiang region of China

Qatar has introduced new labour laws: the country is establishing the first minimum wage in the Gulf States, which will increase the wages of 400,000 migrant workers by 33%. The country is also dismantling the ‘kafala’ sponsorship system and enabling migrant workers to change employers, and exit and enter the country for work more easily. Observers welcomed the reforms in the context of the upcoming 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar, which relies heavily on migrant labour in the construction sector, and are now focused on implementation.

Week of 31 August 2020 Qatar has introduced new labour laws: the country is establishing the first minimum wage in the Gulf States, which will increase the wages of 400,000 migrant workers by 33%. The country is also dismantling the “kafala” sponsorship system and is enabling migrant workers to change employers and exit and enter … Continue reading Qatar has introduced new labour laws: the country is establishing the first minimum wage in the Gulf States, which will increase the wages of 400,000 migrant workers by 33%. The country is also dismantling the ‘kafala’ sponsorship system and enabling migrant workers to change employers, and exit and enter the country for work more easily. Observers welcomed the reforms in the context of the upcoming 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar, which relies heavily on migrant labour in the construction sector, and are now focused on implementation.

In the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, emerging technology like contact tracing apps has arisen as a key tool to track the spread of the virus and protect public health. Faced with a growing risk of governments using these technologies to violate human rights and exacerbate conflict, tech companies have a responsibility to address the impacts of their products, including collectively through multi-stakeholder initiatives and individually through strong policies and oversight mechanisms (JustPeace Labs)

Week of 24 August 2020 In the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, emerging technology like contact tracing apps has arisen as a key tool to track the spread of the virus and protect public health. Faced with a growing risk of governments using these technologies to violate human rights and exacerbate conflict, tech companies have … Continue reading In the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, emerging technology like contact tracing apps has arisen as a key tool to track the spread of the virus and protect public health. Faced with a growing risk of governments using these technologies to violate human rights and exacerbate conflict, tech companies have a responsibility to address the impacts of their products, including collectively through multi-stakeholder initiatives and individually through strong policies and oversight mechanisms (JustPeace Labs)