Dana Johnston

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There is a massive gap between the operations of businesses and the fundamental human rights of the workers and people impacted by the businesses. This has become apparent in the multiple major cases of abuse that have occurred in recent history. Businesses should be looking to hold their operations to high human rights requirements. Companies should be required to respect all human rights and not pick and choose which rights to deal with or which rights are easy for them to handle. Businesses have the ability to negatively or positively impact all human rights issues including, health and safety, freedom of association, discrimination, sexual harassment, freedom of expression, rape, torture, privacy, food and water, education and housing, and poverty. The growing impact that businesses have on human rights has given rise to a debate over the roles and responsibilities of the enterprises when it comes to human rights. This debate has made its way on to the United Nations (UN) agenda. The UN has released the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGP) to act as principles and suggestions on how businesses and human rights should be handled. These principles have aided countries (from her on mentioned as “States”) in setting up laws around businesses and human rights, and they lay out the roles of States, businesses, and individuals when it comes to combating human rights violations.

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