Putting people and the planet at the core of business

Liberal Democrat leadership candidates 2020 – pledge on business, human rights and the environment

In July, CORE Coalition and Traidcraft Exchange asked Liberal Democrat leadership candidates Layla Moran MP and Sir Edward Davey MP to sign the following pledge on business, human rights and the environment.

As of 24 August 2020, Layla Moran has agreed to sign up to support the pledge and our campaign.

The pledge

Our pledge for all Liberal Democrat leadership candidates who believe we need to do more to ensure ‘better business’ and the protection of human rights and the environment:

  1. To retain and build on the Party’s 2019 General Election commitment for ‘Better Business’.
  2. To commit to ensuring the UK does not fall behind the EU on the adoption of progressive policies on business and human rights, and the environment.
  3. To this end, to support and call for a new law that will require UK companies to conduct due diligence on their human rights and environmental risks and holds companies accountable for failing to prevent abuses that do occur.

Background

  • The Liberal Democrat’s 2019 General Election manifesto committed to ‘Introduce a general duty of care for the environment and human rights – requiring companies, financial institutions and public sector agencies to exercise due diligence in avoiding specified activities such as child labour or modern slavery, or specified products such as commodities produced with deforestation, in their operations and supply chains, and to report on their actions.’
  • UK civil society groups are calling for legislation to hold companies accountable for human rights and environmental abuses. This will bring the UK into line with the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights.
  • The European Commission has announced that it will bring forward legislation in 2021 on mandatory due diligence for companies as part of its Covid-19 recovery package and European Green Deal. This has been welcomed by MEPs, Member State governments, companies, unions and NGOs.

https://www.libdems.org.uk/plan

https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2019/oct/23/liberal-democrats-jo-swinson-plans-for-environmental-duty-of-care-for-uk-firms