40,651 of 50,000 signatures

To the president of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, and EU Foreign Affairs ministers

Petition

The absence of the European Union and its Member States at the negotiations on a United Nations treaty on transnational corporations and human rights is a scandal. This treaty, if adopted, could provide a historic opportunity to hold corporations to account.

The EU should stop undermining this process, start taking part in discussions, and participate in good faith in the discussions on the nature, content and scope of the treaty taking place in Geneva in October 2016.

Why is this important?

In the next few days, a discussion about one of the main causes of the greatest injustices of our time, corporate abuse [1], is taking place. And despite having been warmly invited to take part, EU countries have chosen to ignore it.

For the first time in history we could have a way to internationally clamp down on corporate abuses. A new global treaty would introduce legally binding rules for corporations. But despite having support from most countries in the United Nations, every EU country is boycotting this treaty [2]. Granted, this is but a first step. But it is one that thousands of people have longed for for decades, and which can help us start change.

Let’s send a strong message to our leaders. The European Parliament already issued a resolution urging EU countries to engage in this global discussion [3], and right now a global coalition of movements, backed by thousands of people in Europe, are working together to up the pressure.

In partnership with:

Friends of the Earth Europe, Global Justice Now, EWNI, Progressio, Milieudefensie-FoE Netherlands, SOMO, Les Amis de la Terre France, CCFD-Terre Solidaire, ActionAid France, Aitec, Ethique sur l'Etiquette, Sherpa, FIAN France, CIDSE, Supply Cha!nge, International Trade Union Confederation, ActionAid, Nazemi, FoE Germany-BUND, Manitese, Friends of the Earth Finland.

References

[1] https://www.theguardian.com/business/2016/sep/12/global-justice-now-study-multinational-businesses-walmart-apple-shell http://www.globaljustice.org.uk/sites/default/files/files/resources/controlling_corporations_briefing.pdf

[2] https://www.foeeurope.org/sites/default/files/eu-us_trade_deal/2015/ttip_un_treaty_report_v11_spreads.pdf France did send a low-ranking official

[3] http://www.treatymovement.com/news/2015/6/22/european-parliament-calls-on-eu-member-states-engage-in-un-human-rights-council-debate-on-a-legally-binding-instrument-on-business-human-rights

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