Paris, 17 November 2015, Sherpa has been a pioneer in the campaign for the accountability of multinational corporations since 2001. Corporations are still committing too many human rights violations. It is urgent that French institutions hold major corporations responsible for the damages caused by their subsidiaries and subcontractors abroad.
The French Senate will hold a vote tomorrow on the Bill concerning multinational corporations’ duty of care.
Sherpa has been campaigning since 2001 in favour of a legal framework holding parent companies and ordering parties liable for the acts committed by their subsidiaries and subcontractors, and access to justice for their victims. Human rights violations are nowadays often committed by economic actors, which have sometimes become more powerful than States.
Over 1000 people have died on the construction sites associated with the 2022 FIFA World Cup, over 1000 workers were found dead in the rubble of the Rana Plaza building in Bangladesh, children are being exploited in Chinese factories, land grabbing and environmental damage are rife, in some parts of Africa people’s health is being seriously damaged… In the absence of any regulation forcing multinational corporations to comply with human rights, Sherpa’s resourcefulness has been put to the test in finding ways to hold these companies accountable through legal action. This goes to show, although no further proof was needed, the urgency of setting up real accountability of multinational corporations for Human rights violations committed by their subsidiaries and subcontractors, in France and abroad.
Thus, after a 14-year struggle, the debate on a Bill concerning the duty of care which will take place in the Senate tomorrow is a major step forward for Sherpa, especially given the current political context which is generally unfavourable to such a principle. Tomorrow, French Senators will be given an opportunity to lead the way for Europe if they wish to.
William Bourdon, President of SherpaTags: accountability of multinational corporations, Duty of care Last modified: 17 December 2019