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Strict Standards: Non-static method Log::error() should not be called statically in /homepages/9/d283779664/htdocs/blihr/includes/common/webpage.php on line 78

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Strict Standards: Non-static method Log::error() should not be called statically in /homepages/9/d283779664/htdocs/blihr/public/blihr/components/global_header.php on line 153

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BLIHR | Step 5

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Strict Standards: Non-static method Log::error() should not be called statically in /homepages/9/d283779664/htdocs/blihr/includes/common/url.php on line 1097

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STEP 5: Report on targets, performance and commitments

Sustainability reporting is becoming a key item in a business calendar. Often the process surrounding both the production of the final report and its launch can have a significant effect upon its reception and authenticity in terms of human rights content.

There are some specific aspects of good practice in issuing human rights in business reports which are worthy of consideration:

  • It is perhaps impossible to report on all human rights performance every year. What are the key business functions and key human rights which need to be disclosed regularly? What aspects of the business might be reported on in depth every 2-3 years?
  • Being open not just about achievements but also areas of human rights weakness. For example, Gap Inc.’s Social Report in 2004 was heavily praised for its honesty and openness in showing areas of weakness or lack of clarity in the labour rights performance of suppliers.
  • Involving stakeholders in developing the human rights content of the annual report. For example, General Electric has an international stakeholder panel which advises on the human rights content of its annual Citizenship report.
  • Sometimes a business should report on a specific project more immediately. For example, BP set in place its own reporting mechanisms in relation to the Baku-Tibilisi-Ceyhan and Tanggu pipe-lines, as well as summaries of human rights impact assessments and the reports of independent expert panels.
  • Accessibility. Is the report available to all those who might need to read it? Which languages is it available in? Is it available to blind or partially sighted?

In many ways less is more when it comes to good human rights reporting. Businesses will be rewarded for forthright honesty and directness more than glossy photographs and expensive design. The expectations of business reporting in the field of human rights will continue to develop over the years ahead.

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