Identifying internationally recognised human rights
Identifying internationally recognised human rights

The following Risk & Compliance practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Identifying internationally recognised human rights
  • The responsibility to respect human rights
  • The International Bill of Human Rights
  • The International Labour Organization's Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work
  • Other applicable human rights

Identifying internationally recognised human rights

The UN Guiding Principles on business and human rights (UNGPs) require businesses to respect ‘internationally recognised human rights’. This Practice Note sets out a non-exhaustive list of the rights considered to fall within this definition.

The responsibility to respect human rights

Principle 12 of the UNGPs states:

The responsibility of business enterprises to respect human rights refers to internationally recognised human rights—understood, at a minimum, as those expressed in the International Bill of Human Rights and the principles concerning fundamental rights set out in the International Labour Organization's Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work.

It is therefore crucial to any UNGP compliance programme to understand what rights are set out in these international instruments. They fall into three broad categories:

  1. the International Bill of Human Rights

  2. the International Labour Organization's Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work

  3. other applicable human rights

The International Bill of Human Rights

The International Bill of Human Rights (IBHR) is the umbrella term for three core international human rights instruments adopted by the United Nations. The IBHR

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