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Human rights: What does it mean for businesses?

Exploring business and human rights

With the rise of ESG and new legislation on human rights and supply chain due diligence, demonstrating respect for human rights has never been so important for businesses. In this podcast series we explore a number of key business and human rights themes that businesses need to be aware of.


Trends in claims against multinationals in connection with human rights or environmental impacts abroad

In this episode of our business and human rights podcast series, David Thomas and Rebecca Burton discuss trends in claims brought in the UK against multinational companies in connection with human rights and/or environmental impacts abroad.


Business and Human Rights: The changing landscape

The spotlight has been cast on business and human rights with companies realising how very real human rights risks are. Setting the backdrop for this podcast series, Rachel Barrett, Julia Grothaus and Vanessa Havard-Williams provide an overview of the current landscape and look at where we are going in terms of the law and the legal initiatives that are in play.


Where are we today? Existing regimes in Switzerland, Netherlands & France

Business and human rights due diligence legislation is much more developed in Switzerland, the Netherlands and France than other parts of the EU. Julia Grothaus, Gerard Meijer, Bo Ra Hoebeke and Jean-Charles Jaïs, joined by Dr Laurenz Uhl take stock of the current legal frameworks and share their insights.


Business and human rights: la prospettiva italiana

Le tematiche connesse alla due diligence sui diritti umani e alla responsabilità delle società capogruppo rappresentano temi ampiamente dibattuti a livello europeo. Paolo Bertolini ci parla di come tali tematiche siano percepite a livello italiano.

(Human rights due diligence and parent company exposure are topics much debated at European level. Paolo Bertolini provides a brief overview on how they are perceived in Italy.)


The EU sustainable corporate governance initiative – towards a mandatory human rights due diligence

In this episode of our business and human rights podcast series, Thierry L’Homme, Elisa Sourmelis and Guillaume Croisant shed light on the European Union’s sustainable corporate governance initiative, whose adoption is planned for Q2 2021. The initiative envisages among others, to impose on companies operating in the EU to undertake mandatory human rights and environmental due diligence in their global operations and supply chains.


Getting practical: Human rights due diligence in M&A transactions

Vanessa Havard-Williams and Rachel Barrett are joined by Henry Smith and Maria Knapp from Control Risks to discuss the practical aspects of human rights due diligence in the context of M&A transactions. How do you do it, what should you look out for, and what are your options when it comes to dealing with due diligence findings?


Building Business and Human Rights due diligence into Business as Usual

For many organisations, an effective approach to managing their human rights impacts will involve integrating human rights due diligence into ‘business as usual’. In fact when they look, many organisations find they are already doing more than they realise in this area. In this next episode of our business and human rights podcast series Rachel Barrett and Vanessa Havard-Williams are joined by Maria Knapp and Clare Morton from Control Risks to discuss how businesses can successfully embed human rights due diligence programmes.


Remedy: Preventing and addressing adverse human rights impacts

Remedy is a topic that often poses particular challenges in a business and human rights context. Rachel Barrett, Xavier Taton, Guillaume Croisant and James Marlow explore what we mean by remedy, how businesses can approach it and how they can prevent recurrence and manage future human rights risks and impacts.


Business and Human Rights Arbitration

In recent years we have seen a number of initiatives and developments that aim at expanding the scope of arbitration to include human rights issues. In this episode of our business and human rights podcast series Gerard Meijer, Juan Manuel Sanchez Pueyo and Suleyman Wellings-Longmore discuss two of those initiatives: The Hague Rules on Business and Human Rights Arbitration and the Bangladesh Accord.

How Linklaters can help you

Human rights governance

Good governance is key to managing human rights risk. Our expertise on the soft law and regulatory landscape and knowledge of market practice helps us review and uplift existing, or design and implement new, frameworks, policies, and procedures to ensure clients can identify and manage their human rights risks.

Human rights due diligence

Whether in relation to their own supply chains, in the course of their M&A or investment activity or as part of enhanced diligence for specific projects, we help clients identify and understand potential and actual human rights impacts, their implications and how to manage them.

Human rights compliance

As the landscape becomes more heavily regulated, we are helping clients stay on top of developments and take steps to ensure compliance with new requirements. This includes both new due diligence regimes and reporting requirements, whether clients are directly in-scope or indirectly impacted through their activities and relationships.

Litigation and liability risks

We help clients understand and handle questions, complaints, allegations, claims and other forms of action from a range of stakeholders, including NGOs, local communities, regulators, and investors. We also help clients take steps to minimise the risk of such actions happening in the first place or repeating, as well as with remedy.

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