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OHCHR: UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights and Environment presented recommendations regarding due diligence and businesses

David Boyd, UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights and Environment, presented a plan that seeks to reduce the violation of human and environmental rights carried on by business activities. This proposal contains a series of recommendations to better regulate the due diligence duties of these actors.

“Business that operates on a global scale constantly abuses human and environmental rights” affirms Boyd. Moreover, the vast majority of the victims from these activities are children, women, indiginous peoples, black communities, peasants and other vulnerable groups that unfortunately bare with a higher difficulty when it comes to holding these businesses accountable and accessing an effective remedy. 

Another proposal that aims to regulate the sphere of business and human rights is the Proposal for a Directive on Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence presented by the European Commission in 2022. According to Boyd, this proposal will seek to grant access to new business in European markets on the condition that they act with due diligence. 

Some positive development should come this year also  from the  “Legally Binding Instrument to Regulate, in International Human Rights Law, the Activities of Transnational Corporations and Other Business Enterprises” in the  UN Human Rights Council. This could be the first international legally binding instrument that will assign duties of due diligence to business enterprises.

In this context, Boyds proposal is an attempt to better articulate the sphere of business and human rights, including 10 essential elements to better understand the problematic surrounding violations of human rights and affective access to remedy for the victims.