The National Plan for the Implementation of the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights

France has always been committed to promoting social and environmental standards for businesses. Its legislation was among the first of its kind in Europe. To see responsible corporate conduct advance, France is using all of its possible levers, combining hard and soft law tools with national, European and international standards.

A fundamental objective of national, European and international action is to include the highest corporate standards to protect human rights. That is why France adheres to the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, which were unanimously approved by the United Nations Human Rights Council in its resolution 17/4 of 16 June 2011 on the basis of the report entitled: “Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights: Implementing the United Nations ‘Protect, Respect and Remedy’ Framework” established in 2011 by John Ruggie. With this plan, France commits to implementing them, mainly via its groundbreaking corporate social responsibility policy.

The “United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights” is a universal road map for implementing the standards aiming to make businesses accountable with regard to human rights. Their unanimous adoption and their gradual implementation constituted a major step forward in translating into action the awareness that globalization comes with a responsibility for all stakeholders, both public and private. For they must take care of the planet and society in which and from which they live to ensure that human development is genuinely sustainable.

The “National Plan for the Implementation of the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights” was drafted on the basis of recommendations issued by the National Consultative Commission on Human Rights (CNCDH), and work conducted by the National CSR Platform, created by the Prime Minister in June 2013 to be a forum for dialogue and cooperation for the different actors of French society (representatives of businesses, employees, associations and NGOs, academics, multi-stakeholder structures) and government representatives (central administrations, members of parliament, local governments).

This plan focuses on the three Ruggie Principles (protect, respect, remedy). For each of its three pillars it presents the principles themselves, the CNCDH and National CSR Platform recommendations and the action already underway in France, along with proposals for action underway to strengthen their implementation. The monitoring and evaluation of the National Action Plan on Business and Human Rights and of the results of actions underway will be ensured by the CNCDH. It has been sent to the European Commission in response to its request sent to each Member State to draft an action plan on human rights as part of its CSR strategy.

Read the Action Plan