UN human rights office unveils pro-LGBTI business standards

The U.N. human rights office on Tuesday announced a series of standards for businesses to fight discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. One of the five standards states businesses “should develop policies, exercise due diligence and remediate adverse impacts to ensure they respect human rights of LGBTI people.”

“Businesses should also establish mechanisms to monitor and communicate about their compliance with human rights standards,” it reads.

Another standard says businesses “should ensure that there is no discrimination in their recruitment, employment, working conditions, benefits, respect for privacy or treatment of harassment.” The third standard urges businesses to “provide a positive, affirmative environment so that LGBTI employees can work with dignity and without stigma.”

The fourth standard advises businesses not to “discriminate against LGBTI suppliers, distributors or customers and should use their leverage to prevent discrimination and related abuses by their business partners.” The fifth and final standard urges businesses to work to stop human rights abuses in the countries in which they operate.

“In doing so, they should consult with local communities to identify steps they might take — including public advocacy, collective action, social dialogue, support for LGBTI organizations, and challenging abusive government actions,” it reads.

The U.N. Office for Human Rights formally unveiled the standards at Microsoft’s New York headquarters. U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein delivered the keynote address. Read more via Washington Blade