5 practical recommendations for companies to address human rights in supply chains

 

CSR Europe delivers an analysis articulated in 5 practical recommendations for companies to address human rights in their supply chains.

 

1. POLICY COMMITMENT: Align with international standards and set up policy implementation guidance

 

Among other things we recommend to:

  • Set up dedicated policies when critical materials are part of the supply chain, and complement them with implementation guidance to clarify commitments.

2. RISK ASSESSMENT & CAPACITY BUILDING: Prioritise risks and ask yourself the right questions

 

Among other things we recommend to:

  • Adopt supply chain transparency —make efforts on supply chain mapping and be transparent about upstream factories/smelters/refiners manufacturing branded products.
  • Ask yourself the following questions, to increase your impact:
    1. Have we reviewed factual information about whether and how we verify the claims made by our suppliers as country of origin and route of travel from the source?
    2. Are we able to identify all upstream factories/smelters/refiners? If not, what’s the plan to do that?
    3. How do we assess the adequacy of those upstream actors’ due diligence practices?

3. REMEDIATION: More targeted action required in line with international standards

 

Among other things we recommend to:

  • Describing the steps taken, either individually or in collaboration with others, to address human rights risks and abuses associated with their supply chain(s), such as the worst forms of child labour.
  • Taking into account how operations impact the human rights of internal and external stakeholders.

4. TRANSPARENCY: Call for full disclosure

 

Among other things we recommend to:

  • Publishing details of independent audits or other checks carried out to verify the origins of cobalt and the nature of human rights risks or abuses associated with specific companies or locations of extraction or trading.
  • Setting out clear transparency standards for public disclosure in line with international standards, such as OECD Guidance and CCCMC Guidelines.
  • Increasing transparency down the chain.

5. THE ROLE OF COLLABORATIVE INITIATIVES: useful platforms to join, but not enough to address risks

 

Among other things we recommend to:

  • Complement individual efforts to integrate sustainability into raw material sourcing by joining industry-led initiatives.
  • Work towards cross-sectorial alignment of tools across the different sectors.

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