GeSI UN Guiding Principles Good Practice Guide 2017

GeSI Good Practice Guide: Responding to and Embracing the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights

The UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs) are a set of 31 principles that clarify the duties and responsibilities of companies to protect and respect human rights and to ensure access to effective remedy for individuals and groups whose rights are affected by a company’s activities. The UNGPs fit under the rights defined  by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR). The UNGPs encompass three pillars outlining how states and businesses should implement the framework:

  • The state’s duty to protect human rights;
  • The corporate responsibility to respect human rights;
  • Access to remedy for victims of business-related abuses.

In summary, the UNGPs expect companies to:

•    Define a comprehensive, organization-wide human rights policy, communicate the policy publicly  and make a public commitment to support and respect human rights and embrace the UNGPs (while  acknowledging other relevant human rights conventions and frameworks);

  • Publish a human rights statement;
  • Define “salient” human rights issues (defined below);
  • Integrate human rights into the company’s governance, strategy, and management processes;
  • Hold suppliers, partners, and contractors accountable for their human rights performance on salient issues;
  • Assess, communicate, and report on human rights performance;
  • Address and remediate key grievances, disputes, and impacts.

There are no formal criteria that determine whether a company is in compliance with the UNGPs or not. Currently, there is an open field for a variety of stakeholders to set expectations and guidelines for adoption.

This Good Practice Guide presents a synthesis view from respected human rights and corporate responsibility (CR) organizations and thought-leaders, as well as from ICT and other companies. This Good Practice Guide is suggestive. It is meant to be a supportive resource for GeSI Members, but Members should not view it as a standard or requirement. Following the practices outlined in 
this document may increase the likelihood that stakeholders will see a GeSI Member as in compliance with the UNGPs. However, it does not guarantee this outcome.

You may also be interested in...
View all