Last week, Business for Social Responsibility (BSR) and GlobeScan released their 7th annual State of Sustainable Business Report. Given BSR’s impressive membership provides a one-of-a-kind overview of what major businesses across the globe think about sustainability and corporate social responsibility (CSR). It also suggests that consumers who care about CSR and sustainability could be doing a whole lot more to pressure corporations to act.
Author: Michael Kourabas
Last week in Geneva, a United Nations working group held its first week-long session to debate the parameters of a potential binding treaty concerning corporate human rights abuses.
Even in a more open and democratic Burma, the Rohingya, an ethnic Muslim minority, continue to suffer. And there isn’t a single actor — governmental, corporate or otherwise — willing to take responsibility.
Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court declined to hear plaintiffs’ appeal in Cardona v. Chiquita Brands International, a lawsuit brought by victims of terrorism and crimes against humanity in Colombia. The Court may also have, once and for all, shut the door to the American courts for individuals harmed by American corporations abroad.
In light of the World Bank’s recent decision not to investigate connections between the Bank’s development projects and the forced labor in Uzbekistan, positive steps by apparel and home goods companies are vital.
Levi Strauss & Co. is hoping that, by incentivizing its worldwide web of suppliers to operate more responsibly, it can create what it is calling a sustainability “race to the top” in its supply chain.
Last week, a group of Colombian plaintiffs asked the Supreme Court to revive their lawsuit against banana giant Chiquita. This case presents an opportunity for the Supreme Court to clarify its 2013 decision in Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Shell and give much needed guidance to plaintiffs and businesses regarding when a corporation may be liable under U.S. law for human rights abuses committed abroad.
Canadian multinationals beware: Your home and native land may now be the forum of choice for plaintiffs seeking to bring international human rights lawsuits.
Last week, the Supreme Court heard oral argument in Young v. UPS, a case that could change the way pregnant women are treated by their employers. The case will force conservative justices to choose between two core right-wing constituencies: anti-choice activists and pro-business groups.
In addition to offending all notions of civil liberties, the Uzbek forced labor system is just plain bizarre. For example, one’s work boss is also one’s boss in the cotton fields and, incredibly, cotton-picking skills may “become a component of annual job evaluations, skewing decisions on promotions.”
This week, ProPublica and Frontline released an exhaustively researched look at the vital role played by Firestone in supporting Liberia’s former president.
Last week, the International Bar Association (IBA) issued guidance — the first of its kind — to bar associations, private lawyers and law firms about how to integrate the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business & Human Rights into their work.