Ethical Performance
inside intelligence for responsible business


Ruggie tests complaints idea

October 2009

A pilot to test out grievance procedures on alleged human rights abuses by companies has been set up by the United Nations special representative on business and human rights, John Ruggie.

The project will test ideas set out in Ruggie’s 2008 and 2009 reports to the UN Human Rights Council, in which he suggested the international community could come to agreement on  a global complaints mechanism to deal with allegations of human rights abuses by companies.

Five businesses from different sectors will be involved in the pilot: Colombian mining company Cerrejon; electronics firm Hewlett-Packard; UK-based retailer Tesco; Hong Kong-based textiles firm Esquel Group; and Russian oil and gas company Sakhalin II. The latter has been the subject of allegations of human rights infringements relating to its development of the Sakhalin oil pipeline in Russia.

The project will start with talks between the companies and their stakeholders about how a complaints mechanism might work.

Any systems that are set up will be monitored and evaluated over a 12-month period, with a report on the results in early 2011.

United Nations | Global | Human rights

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