Press Release

ICAR welcomes the introduction of the Corporate Human Rights Risk Assessment, Prevention, and Mitigation Act of 2019

Washington, D.C., July 11, 2019—Yesterday, a discussion draft of the Corporate Human Rights Risk Assessment, Prevention, and Mitigation Act of 2019 was introduced, a landmark piece of legislation that would require U.S. companies to provide critical information regarding their human rights risks and impacts to investors and consumers.

Under the Bill, publicly listed companies that file an annual report with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) are required to conduct an annual assessment of the human rights risks and impacts in their operations and throughout their value chains, rank those risks on their severity of harm to the rights holder, and disclose the process and results of their assessment, as well as any actions the company has taken to avoid, mitigate, or remediate the identified risks or impacts.

“On behalf of a coalition of forty-five environmental, human rights, and corporate responsibility non-profit organizations, we’re thrilled to support this bill. The introduction of this bill sends a powerful message that Congress is moving to catch up with what consumers and investors already know—how a company manages its environmental, social, and governmental responsibilities, including their human rights risks, tells you a lot about how they manage their business,” said Alison Friedman, Executive Director of the International Corporate Accountability Roundtable.

The bill is the first in the United States to require broad scale human rights information disclosure and builds upon a strong investor movement calling for more and better ESG data. In October 2018, investors representing over $5 trillion in assets under management petitioned the SEC for a rulemaking that would mandate ESG disclosure, and the introduction of this legislation is a welcome next step.

“The SEC has a responsibility to the public and investors to ensure relevant business information is readily accessible and standardized, so that investors can make informed decisions. This bill moves to close a gap that left investors vulnerable to unidentified risks that is fully consistent with the SEC’s mandate,” said Alison Friedman, Executive Director of the International Corporate Accountability Roundtable.

Find out more about the legislation here.

For more information contact Juli King at juli@icar.ngo

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