The Benefits of Transparency: A Business Case for the Apparel and Footwear Supply Chain Transparency Pledge

ICAR’s new report, The Benefits of Transparency: A Business Case for the Apparel and Footwear Supply Chain Transparency Pledge, makes the business case for companies to adopt greater supply chain transparency measures, showing that when they do, businesses enjoy better reputations, greater operational efficiency, improved legal compliance, and increased access to capital.

Jana Morgan

Written Congressional Testimony: “The Application of Environmental, Social, and Governance Principles in Investing and the Role of Asset Managers, Proxy Advisors, and Other Intermediaries”

ICAR Director of Advocacy and Campaigns, Jana Morgan, submitted written testimony to the Congressional record for the April 2, 2019 Banking Committee hearing entitled “The Application of Environmental, Social, and Governance Principles in Investing and the Role of Asset Managers, Proxy Advisors, and Other Intermediaries.”

Read the full written testimony here.

Jana Morgan
Jana Morgan

Setting the Record Straight: Common Myths about Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) Reporting

Over the past few decades, investors have become increasingly concerned not only with the short term profits of their investments, but also the long-term viability of the public companies in which they invest. The United States’ lack of action puts the country at risk of falling behind the global curve in mandating the disclosure of ESG issues important to investor assessment of long-term profitability. Common misconceptions about ESG reporting must be addressed in order to push forth meaningful reporting requirements that respond to investor needs.

Jana Morgan
Jana Morgan

Why Enhanced Securities Disclosures Matter for Long-Termism

Environmental, social, and governance (ESG) reporting provides critical information to investors that helps to guide their investment decisions, and as such is critical for the long-term health and well-being of a public company. These disclosures are essential for companies that want to be seen as good corporate citizens. When a company is transparent around these important issues it often receives a reputational boost and greater access to capital. The Securities and Exchange Commission should initiate a rulemaking to ensure that ESG disclosures are comprehensive, consistent, and comparable.

Jana Morgan

Full Disclosure: Toward Better Modern Slavery Reporting

A new report by ICAR and Focus on Labour Exploitation (FLEX) takes stock of progress made under current modern slavery reporting requirements and issues recommendations to improve these laws and corporate reporting practices under them.

Good Business: The Economic Case for Protecting Human Rights

ICAR, Frank Bold, and the Business and Human Rights Young Researchers Summit are pleased to announce the publication of a new report that explores evidence based economic arguments for companies to promote human rights. The report is entitled “Good Business: The Economic Case for Protecting Human Rights.”

Who Made our Uniforms? U.K. Public Sector Apparel Procurement: Ensuring Transparency and Respect for Human Rights

A new report published by CORE and ICAR reveals that that a third of companies that have supplied uniforms for UK public sector workers, including the armed forces and prison officers, have not reported on what they are doing to tackle slavery in their supply chains.

Our report ‘Who Made Our Uniforms?’ reveals that few contractors supplying uniforms and specialist safety clothing to the UK public sector are transparent about their ethical standards and international suppliers.

Sophia Lin

Tools of Trade: U.S. Sanctions Regimes and Human Rights Accountability Strategies

This paper, a joint product of ICAR and the Enough Project, lays out the essential elements of how sanctions programs are created, implemented, and enforced. Specifically, the paper details of the legal authorities underlying sanctions, the agencies involved, and the approaches to implementation that have proved most effective. The paper also discusses the specific sanctions programs or mechanisms that can be leveraged to promote human rights abroad.

Sophia Lin

Tools of Trade: The Use of U.S. Generalized System of Preferences to Promote Labor Rights for All

This paper provides an overview of the GSP program and a related regional trade preference program for sub-Saharan African countries, identifies gaps in implementation, and proposes recommendations for Congress and the administration to enhance the legal structure and enforcement of the GSP with a view to improving human rights, including labor rights, globally. 

Cindy Woods

Extractives and National Action Plans (NAPs) on Business and Human Rights.

Despite the widely recognized ill-effects of extractive operations on the communities in which they operate, States, development banks, and extractive companies continue to support these projects without due consideration of their potential human rights impacts.

This report provides guidance on how human rights issues related to the extractive sector can be addressed in NAPs on business and human rights, as well as other similar policies.  It is intended for use by both States with large amounts of oil, gas, mineral, and other natural resource wealth and extraction (host States) and States where multinational extractive companies are domiciled or registered (home States).

Cindy Woods

National Action Plans (NAPs) Toolkit: 2017 Edition

ICAR and DIHR originally published the NAPs Toolkit in July 2014 with the aim of providing the first building blocks towards a common framework for developing and evaluating NAPs on business and human rights. Since its publication, various components of the Toolkit have been utilized by state actors, civil society organizations, national human rights institutions (NHRIs), and academia to inform their work on NAPs, including through the creation of official and shadow National Baseline Assessments and assessments of existing NAPs

Advancing and Strengthening the OECD National Contact Point Peer Review Process – Interim Findings and Recommendations

Accountability Counsel, the International Corporate Accountability Roundtable (“ICAR”), and OECD Watch are conducting research to evaluate the National Contact Point (“NCP”) peer review process and identify opportunities for improvement, with the ultimate aim of ensuring that NCPs are functionally equivalent and provide effective access to remedy. 

Apparel Data Directory

The directory shows which organizations are generating, or will be generating, public information related to labor rights in the apparel industry. The impetus behind the directory came from a meeting that ICAR and C&A Foundation jointly hosted in October 2016, which was attended by data generating, gathering, and policy advocacy organizations. During this meeting, participants agreed that having a map of available data on labor rights in the apparel industry would help to facilitate collaboration, identify gaps in available information, and ensure that the data being produced is useful for policy advocacy organizations.

Assessments of Existing National Action Plans (NAPs) on Business and Human Rights (August 2017)

This August 2017 report updates the ICAR-ECCJ November 2015 publication by incorporating assessments of the NAPs of Norway, Colombia, United Kingdom (2016 iteration), Italy, Switzerland, and United States.  

Jesner v. Arab Bank, PLC

On June 27, 2017, ICAR, along with the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility (ICCR), and the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) filed an amici curiae brief in support of the petitioners in Jesner v. Arab Bank, PLC, which is scheduled to be heard at the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) on October 11 of this year. The case will determine whether the Alien Tort Statute (ATS) can provide an avenue to deliver justice to victims of corporate harms. The ATS permits non-Americans to sue for international human rights abuses.

Cindy Woods

Investment-related Dispute Settlement: Towards Comprehensive Accountability and Inclusive Access to Remedy

The International Corporate Accountability Roundtable (ICAR) and the Centre for Research on Multinational Corporations (SOMO) are pleased to release a briefer on Investment-related Dispute Settlement: Towards Comprehensive Accountability and Inclusive Access to Remedy. 

This document is intended to provide an overview of the ISDS system; present leading critiques on the negative impacts of ISDS in undermining State sovereignty and the State duty to protect human rights; and highlight current State practice in disengaging with the ISDS system, revising bilateral trade agreements, and revising the ISDS system. 

Cindy Woods

Public Procurement and Human Rights: A Survey of Twenty Jurisdictions

Public procurement – the purchase by the public sector of the goods and services it needs to carry out its functions – is a major component of the overall global economy, accounting for €1000 billion per year and on average 12% of GDP in OECD countries.

Human rights standards to which governments have signed up, such as the widely-supported UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, oblige public buyers to ensure respect for human rights in their supply chains.  At the same time, the recently-adopted 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda highlight the role of government procurement as part of the transition to sustainable production and consumption.

Follow the Thread: The Need for Supply Chain Transparency in the Garment and Footwear Industry

ICAR is pleased to announce the publication of "Follow the Thread: The Need for Supply Chain Transparency in the Garment and Footwear Industry," which was developed by a coalition of 9 organizations, including ICAR.

The coalition consists of Clean Clothes Campaign, Human Rights Watch, IndustriALL Global Union, the International Corporate Accountability Roundtable, the International Labor Rights Forum, the International Trade Union Confederation, the Maquila Solidarity Network, UNI Global Union, and the Worker Rights Consortium. 

 

ICAR Assessment of US National Action Plan (NAP) on Responsible Business Conduct

In December 2016, the United States government launched its first NAP on Responsible Business Conduct. In response, ICAR has conducted a structured assessment of the U.S. NAP, using the NAPs Checklist developed and published by ICAR and the Danish Institute for Human Rights (DIHR) as part of the ICAR-DIHR NAPs Toolkit. The NAPs Checklist lays out a set of twenty-five criteria that address both the content of NAPs and the process for developing them.

Cindy Woods

Background Paper: Advancing the Business and Human Rights Agenda through the G7/G20

On February 20, 2017, the International Corporate Accountability Roundtable (ICAR) and the German Institute for Human Rights (DIMR) hosted an expert workshop on Advancing the Business and Human Rights Agenda through the G20 and G7. In preparation for this meeting, ICAR and DIMR produced a background document on the structure and functioning of the G20, its engagement groups, and key German priorities and dates for the 2017 G20 presidency.

 

 

Cindy Woods
Jonathan Herman

ICAR Annual Meeting Reports

Each year in September, the International Corporate Accountability Roundtable (“ICAR”) hosts a closed meeting to discuss the current state of corporate accountability in the domestic and international arenas. The two-day event sets the stage for a united movement on these issues among leading civil society organizations from across the globe.

Download summaries of each of ICAR’s Annual Meetings:

Jonathan Herman
Jonathan Herman

Human Rights Due Diligence: the Role of States

On December 3, 2012, in conjunction with the United Nations Annual Forum on Business and Human Rights, the International Corporate Accountability Roundtable (ICAR) along with the European Coalition for Corporate Justice (ECCJ) and the Canadian Network on Corporate Accountability (CNCA) launched the report below by International Experts on Business and Human Rights, entitled “Human Rights Due Diligence: the Role of States.”

The International Experts commissioned include Professor Olivier De Schutter, Professor Anita Ramasastry, Mark B. Taylor and Robert C. Thompson.

Jonathan Herman
Jonathan Herman

Knowing and Showing: Using U.S. Securities Laws to Compel Human Rights Disclosure

On October 9, 2013, the International Corporate Accountability Roundtable (ICAR) launched a landmark report entitled “Knowing and Showing: Using U.S. Securities Laws to Compel Human Rights Disclosure.”

The Report, edited, reviewed and endorsed by Professor Cynthia A. Williams, argues that human rights are materially relevant to corporate securities reporting and encourages the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to guide businesses in reporting material human rights information in their periodic and proxy disclosure reports.

Jonathan Herman

National Action Plans on Business and Human Rights: A Toolkit for the Development, Implementation, and Review of State Commitments to Business and Human Rights Frameworks

The International Corporate Accountability Roundtable (ICAR) and the Danish Institute for Human Rights (DIHR) proudly announce the launch of National Action Plans on Business and Human Rights: A Toolkit for the Development, Implementation, and Review of State Commitments to Business and Human Rights Frameworks