This new report from UNICEF and the UN Global Compact guides employers in implementing family-friendly policies that support parents and caregivers in their own operations and using their influence and leverage to promote such policies among business partners and within their supply chains.
Conditions of employment not only have a significant impact on the well-being of workers but also their children and families. Yet, for the hundreds of millions of workers in global supply chains, basic entitlements that provide them with the time, services and resources to support their families are widely absent.
The large-scale business disruptions and the socioeconomic crisis resulting from COVID-19 have exacerbated the situation. Now, more than ever, family-friendly policies and practices are needed to support workers and their families during the crisis and beyond.
Be a part of the UN Global Compact participant company staff activation this UN Day
We need all 100,000,000 of you to help make social media history on United Nations Day 24 October!
This year the United Nations celebrates its 75th anniversary, and the Global Compact its 20th.
We want you to help us celebrate both milestones by adding your voice to support global sustainability.
UN Day is on 24 October. The UN Global Compact will mark UN Day by asking you to take part in a simple social media activation on 24 October: add your photo to one of our photo filters that carry the key words from the UN Charter and share with your friends on your social media platforms using the hashtag #UnitingBusiness.
Main campaign link (English):
Join your 100 million co-staffers across the UN Global Compact network!
Here is a UN Day Toolkit with simple ways you can learn about sustainability and the UN in the run-up to UN Day on the 24th:
Check back for more information about the social media activation on UN Day.
Please share any questions you may have about the toolkit. We’re looking forward to working with you! firstname.lastname@example.org.
The private sector plays a key role in tackling gender-based violence in the world of work. Within this context, this guidance note focuses on preventing and addressing harassment in the workplace.
This guidance note forms part of a toolkit to guide gender-responsive business conduct in the private sector in line with the Women’s Empowerment Principles (WEPs) and ILO international labour standards. It focuses on the following key areas:
The UN Human Rights Office and the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights, have joined the United Nations Global Compact in calling for businesses across the value chain to act and assess the human rights situation facing seafarers during the COVID-19 pandemic. 800,000 seafarers are currently either stranded on vessels or prevented from returning to ships due to COVID-19 restrictions on travel and transit.
Under the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, all business enterprises should respect human rights throughout their operations, including during the transfer of goods in their supply chains. Accounting for almost 90 percent of world trade, thousands of business enterprises use the services of maritime freight transport. The pandemic has impacted seafarer and other marine personnel’s basic human rights, including the right to physical and mental health, the right to freedom of movement and the right to family life. With many seafarers stuck on board ships well beyond the 11 months maximum mandated by international labor standards, security and environmental hazards risk increasing.
In a joint statement, Michelle Bachelet, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Sanda Ojiambo, CEO and Executive Director of the United Nations Global Compact and Anita Ramasastry, Chairperson of the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights, call upon all relevant business enterprises to:
Sanda Ojiambo, CEO and Executive Director of the UN Global Compact, the world’s largest corporate sustainability initiative, commenting on the call to action said: “In the context of this pandemic, the responsibility to respect, protect and stand up for seafarers’ rights extends far beyond shipping companies. The vast majority of companies, from multinationals to global brands, rely on maritime transport and seafarers to keep their supply chains moving. It’s time to show they stand with the seafarers and urge governments to find a political solution”.
The High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michele Bachelet, said: “The situation of seafarers worldwide is a hidden but acute humanitarian crisis. It is affecting the basic human rights of hundreds of thousands of people, including their rights to physical and mental health, to family life, and to freedom of movement. Behind the dry statistics, there are countless individual stories of human suffering that require a prompt response from governments. Businesses enterprises also can -- and should --play a role.”
Anita Ramasastry, Chair of the UN Working Group of Business and Human Rights, said: “The desperate predicament in which seafarers find themselves during the COVID-19 crisis is a human rights emergency affecting a vast number of people and implicating countless business enterprises that must help to resolve the situation. The Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights provide the globally recognized and authoritative framework for State duties and business responsibilities in preventing and addressing such adverse business-related human rights impacts. Urgent steps need to be taken to get these seafarers home, using the Guiding Principles as a key tool.”
While several shipping companies, including Maersk, have called for action, a number of non-shipping related businesses are increasingly stepping up, expressing strong concern for the ongoing forced labor in their supply chains. Last week, 30 major consumer goods forum companies, including Unilever and Danone, wrote to the Secretary-General to express their urgent concern. CEOs from ten of the world’s largest seafood companies also called for urgent government action in a statement released last week.
Last week, at an event convened by the UN Global Compact and UN partners on the margins of the General Assembly, the UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, reiterated seafarers’ essential role in the “often invisible global logistics chain”. He repeated calls to governments, alongside leaders from business, the UN, and unions, to deem them “key workers” and facilitate their transfer.
The UN Global Compact CFO Taskforce today launched the first integrated, UN-backed principles for integrated SDG Finance and Investment. The principles seek to guide companies in aligning their sustainability commitments with credible corporate finance strategies to create real-world impact on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Released on the sidelines of the historic 75th session of the UN General Assembly, 34 Chief Financial Officers and C-suite Executives – members of the UN Global Compact’s CFO Taskforce – pin pointed four key areas that are relatively underserved but critical for SDG-aligned investments: SDG impact and measurement, integrated SDG strategies and investments, integrated corporate SDG Finance and integrated SDG communication and reporting. The goal is to work with the investment value chain, including investors, banks, development finance institutions, credit ratings agencies and sustainability assessment firms to create a broad, liquid and efficient market for SDG investments and capital flows.
As custodians of over $14 trillion a year in corporate investment, CFOs can be a driving force for the achievement of the SDGs. With growing interest in sustainable and responsible investment worldwide, it is increasingly crucial for CFOs to help their companies shape credible, SDG-aligned corporate sustainability strategies.
“The Principles for SDG-aligned Corporate Finance enable the broader finance ecosystem to scale up financing and investments towards the SDGs to ensure that we leave no-one behind. This is the right and opportune thing to do as the long term success of business is inextricably linked to a sustainable future for all,” said Sanda Ojiambo, CEO and Executive Director of the UN Global Compact.
"Understanding how issuers contribute to the SDGs is a fundamental part of PIMCO’s sustainable investment and engagement strategy,” said Scott Mather, Chief Investment Officer, PIMCO U.S. Core Strategies, and Co-Chair of the CFO Taskforce. “These Principles provide the first integrated, UN-backed framework for companies to incorporate the SDGs in their financial strategy and operations. We hope this will encourage even more issuers to embed sustainability at the core of their business and create new opportunities for SDG investment."
“CFOs play a leading role in establishing clear indications and setting best practices for making corporate finance and investments a real driver of social growth. As members of the CFO Taskforce, we are all committed to working at the service of a new stakeholder capitalism, creating sustainable value for people and the planet,” said Alberto De Paoli, CFO of Enel, and co-chair of the CFO Taskforce. "The UNGC CFO Principles for Integrated SDG Investments and Finance represent a solid first step to guide companies in the adoption of credible finance strategies that fully integrate sustainability towards the achievement of SDGs.”
Developed by members of the CFO Taskforce and in consultation with key institutional partners, the principles are intended to build upon and supplement the overarching Ten Principles of the UN Global Compact on human rights, labor, environment and anti-corruption.
With the launch of the principles, representatives of the CFO Taskforce call on investors, companies, banks, governments, and other market participants to work together towards a sustainable financial system that drives investment into the SDGs. The principles will be supported by implementation guidance, case studies, and working groups to help companies set ambitious targets to accelerate the transition of corporate finance and investments to sustainable development.
The CFO Principles on Integrated SDG Investment and Finance are available for download here.
The 75th anniversary of the United Nations comes at a time of unprecedented disruption and global transformation, serving as a stark reminder that international cooperation must be mobilized across borders, sectors and generations to adapt to changing circumstances.
Over time, the UN has sought to unite stakeholders everywhere to tackle the world’s greatest challenges. Yet our multilateral system is being threatened by those who want to go it alone rather than work together. In the spirit of renewed global cooperation, public and private institutions need to show they are accountable, ethical, inclusive and transparent.
The United Nations Global Compact is calling on our network of thousands of companies to demonstrate support for inclusive multilateralism by signing on to a Statement from Business Leaders for Renewed Global Cooperation (“Statement”).
To indicate your CEO’s support, please fill out the online form no later than 14 September 2020.
The Statement — including the full list of CEO supporters — will be presented to the UN Secretary-General during the UN Private Sector Forum on Monday 21 September as part of the official UN75 commemorations.
As a responsible business leader engaging with the UN through your participation in the UN Global Compact, I sincerely hope you will join us in raising your voice to ensure we steer our world onto a more equitable, inclusive and sustainable path. We are in this together — and we are united in the business of a better world.
Every organization is facing extraordinary challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic. With so much uncertainty comes competitive pressure that radiates through global supply chains and increases pressure on suppliers. For the most vulnerable, this stress can lead to increased labour rights violations and heightened risks for workers who are already exploited.
To combat the potential for these abuses, the UN Global Compact has developed anew leadership brief, Navigating Decent Work Challenges in Multi-Tiered Supply Chains. In it, you’ll discover proactive measures your organization can take to advance decent work throughout your global supply chain—even amidst a global pandemic.
The leadership brief examines how companies can navigate complex multi-tiered supply chains and their associated challenges as part of their efforts to advance decent work in their global supply chains. While multi-tier supply chains have the advantage of driving efficiency, reducing planning cycle lead times and reducing possible business disruptions, they also increase the risk of causing or contributing to human rights impacts and decent work deficits, particularly in the lower tiers of the chain. This is exacerbated in a crisis situation such as a pandemic, where workers’ rights and conditions may be compromised and income threatened as a result of order cancellations, factory shut-downs, or layoffs.
This report seeks to guide multinational enterprises in reducing global supply chain vulnerabilities and provides proactive measures companies can take and best practice examples to draw inspiration from.
Following the huge explosions in Beirut earlier this month, the United Nations Global Compact, Connecting Business Initiative and the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), are calling on the private sector to support relief and recovery efforts.
To ensure that efforts to create a safer Beirut are coherent and sustainable for all those affected by the August 4 Beirut Port explosions, the United Nations Global Compact and partners have created a blueprint for sustainable business responses.
The Business Guide calls for companies operating in Lebanon and worldwide to use strategies and operations grounded in universal principles on human rights, labour, environment, and anti-corruption. The keys for the business response to Beirut’s tragedy are cash donations to relief operations in Beirut, in-kind goods or services, and the contribution of long-term technical expertise, infrastructure (re)-development programs, and economic investment.
Almost two weeks after the Beirut Port explosions, 180 people are dead, more than 6,000 people are estimated to be injured, and at least a dozen people remain missing, according to OCHA. The impact of the disaster runs deep. Recovery efforts will require a long-term, sustained commitment.
If your company’s offer for the Beirut efforts is commercial in nature, please refer to the UN Global Marketplace www.ungm.org for more information.
Business contributions to UN response efforts must comply with the Guidelines on Cooperation between the UN and the Business Sector www.business.un.org/en/documents/guidelines
As the world’s largest corporate sustainability initiative, the United Nations Global Compact is calling on business leaders everywhere to unite to support workers, communities and companies affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, and providing guidance and support to companies everywhere.
A coordinated international plan involving the business sector will be critical in efforts to support people and companies affected, limit further disruption to the economy and facilitate business continuity for a swift recovery.
To help companies navigate the sustainability challenges magnified by COVID-19, the UN Global Compact has compiled a series of COVID-19 issue area briefs that detail the impact of the pandemic on a range of sustainability issue areas including gender equality, ocean, water stewardship, climate, decent work, sustainable finance, human rights and anti-corruption. Each brief includes a variety of resources to help companies build back better and recover stronger.
The UN Global Compact invites CEOs from participating companies to record and submit a video sharing what your company is doing as part of its response, recovery and resilience efforts in light of COVID-19. We invite you to share your ideas, advice and experience with our global community of more than 10,000 businesses and 68 Local Networks. Only by #UnitingBusiness and supporting each other will be able to get through this crisis.
Launched in 2000 by former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan, the UN Global Compact was initiated to bring business and the United Nations together to give a human face to the global market.
When businesses unite, they can be a powerful force for good by upholding universal principles in the areas of human rights, labour, the environment and anti-corruption.
Important progress has been made, but from runaway climate change to widening inequalities, our actions do not currently match the ambition and pace necessary to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030. All stakeholders must unite to transform our collective aspiration into reality.
Through our Local Networks and over 10,000 companies around the world, the UN Global Compact is taking corporate sustainability from the fringes to the mainstream and uniting business for a better world.
Click here to show your support on social media.