Latvian companies can increasingly find human rights clauses in their cooperation agreements. Various human rights requirements can often be found in the codes of conduct for business partners. Furthermore, companies are also publicly affirming their commitment to respect human rights in line with the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights. But what does it mean in practice?
To know where a company’s human rights risks lie and be able to address them appropriately, a company should conduct human rights due diligence. Soon, some Latvian companies will have to report publicly on their due diligence processes. It will be required under the forthcoming Sustainability Information Disclosure Law. In some European countries, local laws make it a legal obligation for some companies to conduct due diligence on human rights (e.g., France, Germany, and Norway). Such a requirement is also expected at a European Union level when the Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence Directive is adopted.
The conference “Human Rights as the New Fuel for Business” will focus on exploring what is human rights due diligence. It will allow representatives of companies and other stakeholders to:
• understand the difference between duties of states and responsibilities of businesses with respect to human rights;
• learn how businesses can identify their human rights risks;
• explore what practical steps companies can take to prevent or mitigate their negative impacts on human rights;
• recognise the importance of meaningful stakeholder engagement;
• get practical guidance from experienced foreign experts who have helped companies integrate due diligence into their operations.
Human rights due diligence is a continuous process explained in the UNGPs and the OECD Guidelines that allows companies to identify, prevent, mitigate and account for how they address their negative impacts on human rights.
Translation into Latvian and English will be provided at the conference. Please charge your mobile phone and bring your earphones to listen to the translation.
The conference is organised by the Ombudsman’s Office of the Republic of Latvia, Riga Graduate School of Law and Nordic Council of Ministers’ Office in Latvia.