Saturday, April 18, 2009

Business & human rights: Weekly Update - April 15, 2009

Weekly Update: Business & Human Rights Resource Centre - 15 Apr 2009

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* UN Special Representative John Ruggie: Report on regional consultation held in New Delhi, 5-6 Feb

* New "NGO reports" section of Resource Centre website
- note: Accessible via the homepage, under "Special Resources"

* UN Working Group on the use of mercenaries concludes visit to Afghanistan
- press release & transcript of press conference

* Apartheid lawsuit in USA: Claims against Daimler, Ford, General Motors, IBM, Rheinmetall to proceed; claims against Barclays, Fujitsu, UBS dismissed
- text of ruling provided

* "Doing Business in a Multicultural World" report by UN Alliance of Civilizations, UN Global Compact
- describes positive initiatives by Abu Dhabi Natl. Energy, American Express, BMW, HSBC, Manpower, Titan Cement, TUI, others

* UN Durban Review Conference side event: "The workplace: Addressing racial discrimination & promoting diversity" (Geneva, 22 Apr)
- Co-organisers: Office of UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Business & Human Rights Resource Centre

* "Durban Review Conference and Caste-Based Discrimination": Position paper by NGOs including Human Rights Watch, Intl. Dalit Solidarity Network

* Campaigners say UK bill will weaken human rights & environmental safeguards for projects that receive export credit guarantees

* Investors Against Genocide says Vanguard "misleading" over human rights policy, given holdings in PetroChina
- article includes comments by Vanguard

* Op-ed by Kathryn Dovey, Andrea Shemberg: Companies need to understand gender inequality is a human rights problem

* India: Mysore cafe staffed by Dalit girls challenges long-held caste taboos

* Panama: Alleged forced eviction of Naso community for cattle company Ganadera Bocas
- article includes comments by Ganadera Bocas

* Peru: Govt. grants Doe Run second extension of environmental clean-up at La Oroya smelter

* UN Global Compact Annual Review 2008 highlights progress by participants, also "serious implementation gaps"

* Mars to start sourcing cocoa that meets Rainforest Alliance standards on environment, labour
- NGOs say measures are step in right direction but stronger protections needed

* "Minerals taxation regimes: A review of issues and challenges", report by Intl. Council on Mining & Metals
- Revenue Watch review of report

* Dubai: BBC report on poor conditions at labour camps for construction workers - UAE Govt. says it will investigate

* Philippines: Court case against 33 labour activists, workers aimed at "suppressing labour rights", says Clean Clothes Campaign

* Nigeria: Manufacturers & tanneries release toxic waste into water sources, says newspaper report

* "Business and Migration: Perceptions from Denmark"
- issues covered include human rights, integration, welfare of migrant workers, supply chain management
- refers to positive steps by Comwell, Eurotex, ISS, Metro, Microsoft, Novo Nordisk

* UK: Law Society event, "Can international human rights law provide meaningful obligations for business?" (London, 29 Apr)

* Español: Panamá: Sin comida ni techo quedan comunidades Naso producto de supuesto desalojo a favor de Ganadera Bocas
- Artículo incluye comentarios de la empresa

* Español: Perú: Gobierno extiende por segunda vez plazo para que Doe Run cumpla con obligaciones ambientales

* Español: EEUU: Masco llega a acuerdo extrajudicial con trabajadores, en su mayoría inmigrantes latinos, por alegaciones que incluían pagos inferiores al mínimo estatal

* Español: Brasil: Entidades financieras como HSBC, Banco Real, Unibanco apoyan campaña para erradicar trabajo forzado

* Español: Expertos del Grupo de Trabajo de la ONU sobre el uso de mercenarios concluyen su visita a Afganistán

* Français : Fédération mondiale des bourses de diamants interdit les diamants de l'est du Zimbabwe à cause des violations des droits de l'homme

* Français : Nigéria : Pfizer paiera $ 75 millions aux victimes des essais de Trovan qui ont fait 11 morts, dans un accord avec l'état de Kano

* Français : Mars se lance dans une « gestion responsable » de sa filière cacao avec l'ONG Rainforest Alliance

* Français : Sénégal : Total sensibilise sur le paludisme

* Français : Liban : « La situation déplorable des travailleurs syriens »

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