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New UNICEF Workbook Provides Advice to Businesses for Addressing their Impact on Children and their Rights

Summary

Corporate actions to safeguard any aspect of children’s rights must be undertaken in a holistic way where companies address material issues in the workplace, marketplace and the community. This is the key message that accompanies UNICEF’s release of a new pilot Workbook for businesses, entitled “Children are Everyone’s Business”, that sets out a comprehensive approach to understanding and addressing corporate impacts on children’s rights.

The UNICEF pilot Workbook helps business to take action to demonstrate their respect and support for children’s rights. Each chapter of the workbook provides guidance to companies on how to minimize or prevent harmful impacts on children as well as methods to enhance their positive impacts in the workplace, marketplace and community. Each chapter also includes short case studies and links to additional resources that provide deeper insight into core areas of interest depending on the company’s specific operating context.

The Workbook builds upon the Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, which established the global standards for company practices regarding their duty to respect the human rights of every person. It is also aligned with the Children’s Rights and Business Principles, which were released in March by UNICEF, the UN Global Impact, and Save the Children.

The Workbook fills a significant gap in existing literature related to impact of business on children’s rights. The Workbook is currently being released as a pilot publication as part of ongoing efforts to collect and integrate user input. With the Workbook in hand, companies now have a practical framework for understanding and assessing their footprint on children’s rights as well as recommendations for making substantive changes in their behavior as it relates to children.

With this release, UNICEF encourages companies and relevant stakeholders, including civil society and governments, to use the Workbook to deliver real and lasting changes to children around the world.

UNICEF welcomes recommendations and feedback from users and invites companies to share case studies demonstrating their commitment to the business and children’s rights agenda.

The complete workbook can be downloaded from UNICEF’s website.

For more information on the Workbook, please contact UNICEF at csr@unicef.org.