Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Business & human rights: Weekly Update - December 12, 2007

From the Business & Human Rights Resource Centre:Weekly Update: 
Business & Human Rights Resource Centre - 12 December

CLICK THIS LINK FOR ALL TOP STORIES added past 7 days / Principales
noticias / Articles de premier plan:

The top stories include / Las noticias incluyen / Les articles

* Summary report on meeting convened by UN Special Representative John
Ruggie, Copenhagen, 8-9 Nov 2007, "Business & Human Rights: The Role of

* Olympic Dream for Darfur calls on Olympic corporate sponsors to raise
Sudan concerns with Chinese Govt.
- Responses by adidas, Anheuser-Busch, Atos Origin, Coca-Cola, Kodak,
GE, Lenovo, McDonald's, Microsoft, Panasonic, Samsung, Staples, Swatch,
- BHP Billiton, Johnson & Johnson, Manulife, UPS, Visa did not respond

* Oxfam report "Investing for Life" says drug companies not doing
enough to provide access to medicines for the poor - makes recommendations
for "responsible business practices"
- Responses by AstraZeneca, GlaxoSmithKline, Merck, Novartis
- Abbott Laboratories, Pfizer have indicated they will respond
- Bristol-Myers Squibb, Eli Lilly, Johnson & Johnson, Roche,
Sanofi-Aventis have not responded

* "Fanning the Flames": War on Want report alleges UK mining companies
involved in human rights abuses overseas
- Responses by Anglo American, Global Coal Management, Monterrico
Metals, Oxus Gold, Rio Tinto, Vedanta, Intl. Council on Mining & Metals
- BHP Billiton, Xstrata did not respond
- AngloGold Ashanti said it has nothing to add to the Anglo American &
ICMM responses
- Statement by Sibuyan Nickel Property Development Corp (SNPDC)

* Human rights guidelines for pharmaceuticals by UN Rapporteur on right
to health: draft open for comments until 31 Dec

* Human Rights Watch recommendations for companies doing business with

* UK Prime Minister calls on companies including Google, Vodafone,
Goldman Sachs, Wal-Mart to help progress towards Millennium Development

* Update on study by John Ruggie and IFC on investment agreements and
human rights

* The "Elders", including Mary Robinson, Desmond Tutu, Graça Machel
launch campaign to raise awareness of Universal Declaration of Human
Rights during its 60th anniversary year: will work with partners including
civil society, business

* Brazil: 6 people, including owner of security company NF Segurança,
sentenced over killings during protest at Syngenta genetically modified
seed farm

* Italy: Thousands in Turin protest following death of 4 workers in
fire at ThyssenKrupp steel plant
- Govt. investigation launched - ThyssenKrupp says it has continuously
kept safety standards high

* UNICEF, Google & NGO "One Laptop per Child" launch One Voice
initiative promoting dialogue by children across borders & cultures

* UN Global Compact, High Commissioner for Human Rights call on
companies to advance human rights during Universal Declaration's 60th
anniversary year

* Rep. of Congo: US "vulture funds" criticised for inhibiting poverty
alleviation by suing to recover debts; but anticorruption campaigners
say they help improve transparency

* World Bank and Merck launch initiative to raise $50 million to fight
river blindness in 28 African countries

* audio: Michael Conroy: "Branded! How the Certification Revolution is
Transforming Global Corporations"

* Español: Paraguay: Ministro de Justicia y Trabajo interviene
supermercado Stock por trabajo infantil y controlará otros supermercados

* Español: Brasil: Ministerio Público condena a dueño de empresa de
seguridad NF Segurança por asesinato de activista de MST en protesta
contra Syngenta

* Español: España: Acciona Energía fomenta modelos energéticos
renovables para reducir emisión de CO2

* Español: España: Fundación Secretariado Gitano evalúa su programa de
acceso al empleo para gitanos: se han atendido a 35.000 personas

* Español: Guatemala: Fundación Menchú acusa al gobierno de defender
intereses de minera canadiense Goldcorp por encima de derechos de

* Français : France : 27 ouvriers poursuivent Bosch en justice pour
discrimination contre femmes et étrangers

* Français : 46 multinationales lancent une initiative "climat", y
compris Alstom, Areva, Suez, Vattenfall, Veolia

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