Over 100 NGOs demand human rights and environmental due diligence legislation
December 2nd, 2019

Over 100 organisations and networks have joined today civil society call for the European Commission to develop corporate accountability legislation requiring companies to respect human rights and the environment in their global value chains and operations.

Civil society organisations and networks from Europe and other regions stress their demands for binding rules on corporate respect for human rights and the environment as, today, the Finnish Presidency holds its “Conference on Business and Human Rights: towards a common agenda for action”. Representatives of the EU institutions, Member States, civil society and companies will discuss how the European Union can effectively implement business respect for human rights.

The civil society statement makes it clear that current EU policy and legislation fails to adequately address the pressing challenges linked to human rights and environmental impacts of corporate global operations. The absence of cross-sectoral rules in the EU requiring companies to identify and address those impacts prevents companies from being held legally accountable when they neglect their responsibilities. Moreover, it makes it impossible for victims of corporate malpractice to seek remedy in courts.

The reliance on a voluntary approach to promote business respect for human rights and the environment has proven insufficient and does not prevent violations of human rights and environmental damages.

The new European Commission should thus take swift action and present a legislative proposal that establishes a mandatory human rights and environmental due diligence framework for business and that provides access to remedy for victims of corporate abuse.

Signatory organisations and networks:

11.11.11, Belgium

Action Aid International

ActionAid France

African Coalition for Corporate Accountability (ACCA)


Amis de la Terre / Friends of the Earth France

Amnesty International

Anti-Slavery International

Attac France

Austrian Federal Chamber of Labour (AKA)

Banana Link

Bangladesh Center for Workers’ Solidarity (BCWS)

Bangladesh Revolutionary Garment Workers Federation (BRGWF)

Bangladesh Garment and Industrial Workers’ Federation (BGIWF)

Bischöfliches Hilfswerk MISEREOR


Bread for All

Brot für die Welt

Business & Human Rights Resource Centre

CCFD-Terre Solidaire

Citizen Power Initiatives for China


Clean Clothes Campaign

Client Earth

Collectif Ethique sur l’étiquette

Comité Pauvreté et Politique

Comité pour l’abolition des dettes illégitimes (CADTM)

Commerce Équitable France

Corporate Accountability Network Germany (CorA)



DKA Austria

Ecologistas en Acción

Entraide et Fraternité (Belgium)

European Coalition for Corporate Justice (ECCJ)

European Environmental Bureau

European Federation of Building & Woodworkers (EFBWW)

European Federation of Food, Agriculture and Tourism Trade Unions (EFFAT)

European Public Service Union (EPSU)

European Trade Union Committee for Education (ETUCE)

European Trade Union Confederation

European Transport Workers’ Federation (ETF)

Fair Trade Advocacy Office


Fairtrade Finland

Fairtrade Germany

Fairtrade International


Forest Peoples Programme

France Amérique Latine (FAL)

Frank Bold

Freedom Fund

Freedom United

Friends of the Earth Europe

Friends of the Earth Germany (BUND)

Friends of the Earth Sweden

Front Line Defenders


GLAN | Global Legal Action Network

Global Aktion

Global Witness

Human Rights International Corner (HRIC)



International Dalit Solidarity Network

International Dalit Solidarity Network (IDSN)

International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH)

La campaña No a los Tratados de Comercio e Inversión


Ligue des droits de l’Homme (LDH)


Max Havelaar France

Max Havelaar Netherlands

National Garments Workers Federation (NGWF)


NeSoVe – Netzwerk Soziale Verantwortung

Notre affaire à tous

Observatorio RSC



Policies for Equitable Access to Health (PEAH)

Polish Institute for Human Rights and Business (PIHRB)


Rainforest Alliance


Réseau des Organisations de la Société Civile pour le Developpement du Tonkpi (ROSCIDET)

Rethinking Value Chains collective

Rights and Accountability Network (RAID)

Robin Wood



Stop the traffik


SÜDWIND e.V., Germany

Terre des Hommes France

The Hunger Project – Germany

Traidcraft Exchange



Union Sindical Obrera (USO)


VOICE Network

Weltladen-Dachverband e.V

Women´s International League for Peace and Freedom Netherlands

World Economy, Ecology & Development e.V.  (WEED)

World Fair Trade Organization – Europe (WFTO-Europe)

World Wildlife Fund (WWF)