Business and human rights is an issue that has moved from niche to mainstream in company thinking as stakeholder expectations rise and society understands impact their choices have on their environments.
Tech has not been immune to this and more and more companies are looking at how they can embed a human rights culture across their organisation, but this can be challenging for many. The UN has seeked to help by agreeing and publishing the Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, principles that companies can take to really embed human rights in business culture.
Helping firms understand these principles and really operationalise human rights has been something techUK has been asked to more and more which is why we are pleased to announce a free conference in London on 2 April. In the conference we will focus particularly on modern slavery as well as human rights issues in the supply chain and procurement and will cover:
- An introduction to the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights
- What does the law require and what do stakeholders, investors and customers expect?
- How to operationalise human rights programmes and secure senior buy in.
- The human rights risks for tech firms now and in the future.
- What tools and guides are out there for tech?
How to operationalise human rights programmes and secure senior buy in.
09:30 – 10:00 Arrival and networking
10:00 – 10:05 Welcome and intros
10:15-10:30 Presentation: The view from an NGO on tech sector performance
View from the NGO sector on their expectations of the tech sector
10:30 – 11:30 Panel: Risks across the tech sector – what we have learned so far?
Operating in different regions, the role of partnerships, legislative requirements (ie the Modern Slavery Act, Conflict Mineral Regulation) identifying supply chain risks, labour rights, where and how to do due diligence.
11:30 - 12:00 Networking break
12:00 – 13:00 Panel: Operationalising and embedding human rights across an organisation
Practitioner panel looking at what companies need to do. What job functions, systems, processes investment, policies etc need to be planned for and designed? How do you ensure everyone is onside and an anti-slavery mindset/awareness is embedded in company culture?
14:00 - 14:15 Presentation: View from a non tech sector company & responding when abuses are found.
14:15-15:00 Panel: Tools, guides and benchmarks
How are companies judged and what written policies and guides are out there? Issues to include the techUK cyber guidance, techUK template, CHRB consultation and what tools and services are available.
15:00 – 15:15 Networking break
15:15– 15:35 Presentation: Risks businesses may overlook
Why the sector needs to look beyond core production areas and take a wider view, looking at recruitment agencies, low-skilled agency staff, event staff and non-core products like uniforms, giveaways and trade show merchandise.
15:35 – 16:30 Panel: Future-gazing: what form will future tech sector human rights risks take?
What will be the future compliance challenges look like, going beyond audit and emerging risk factors – how will these affect the tech sector response to human rights risks?
16:30 – 16:35 Close and thankyous
16:35 – 18:00 Networking drinks