Introduction - Forum on Business and Human Rights 2017
Introduction to the access to remedy pillar
The UN Forum on Business and Human Rights is the global platform for yearly stock-taking and lesson-sharing on efforts to move the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights from paper to practice. As the world's largest gathering on the topic of business and human rights, it provides a unique space for dialogue between governments, business, civil society, affected individuals and communities and international organizations on major human rights issues in the global economy. The central theme of the 2017 UN Forum is "Realizing Access to Effective Remedy". The Forum will address the critical issue of access to remedy by examining systemic flaws and shortcomings in existing efforts and reviewing emerging good practices and innovations, with a view to achieving greater coherence and committed action in the service of human rights and rights-holders. Discussions will include the full range of mechanisms covered by the third pillar of the Guiding Principles: from State-based judicial and non-judicial mechanisms to non-State-based remediation and grievance mechanisms involving companies, industry bodies, multi-stakeholder initiatives and regional and international institutions. For list of non-exhaustive list of topics click here. As a starting point, a constructive dialogue among all stakeholders, featuring new ideas and practice-based perspectives to address current gaps and their root causes, is essential for building greater understanding of challenges and delivering coherent solutions. Such dialogue needs to be action-oriented and aimed at identifying concrete commitments from actors in positions to advance change and overcome existing barriers to remedies. Moreover, such dialogue needs to involve victims, human rights defenders, community and workers' organizations, civil society from all regions, governments, national human rights institutions, business associations, companies, lawyers and investors. The 2017 Forum provides a unique opportunity to bring these various groups together to examine recent initiatives and explore common ground and practical solutions for ensuring more effective access to remedy.