To strengthen the position of workers and marginalized groups in production and value chains the Alliance lobbies for more involvement of companies in CSR issues, such as good working conditions, children’s rights and living wage.
In the current agro-food systems smallholders and workers, among them women and youth, have very limited power. Their interests can be positively impacted by including them in economic activities, or negatively impacted by private sector companies that operate without due diligence on human rights and environmental sustainability. Without voice and agency for making their claims, however, marginalized groups cannot influence these processes that impact their lives so heavily. At the same time, consumers can be powerful if made aware of their influence on private sector actors.
The Civic Engagement Alliances aims at strengthening the role of civic actors to promote the implementation of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs). We aim to diminish the negative impacts of companies on society, in particular on the human rights of citizens and workers. We work with private sector leaders to improve their contribution to CSR, thus setting an example for others to follow.
The Alliance's strategy is based on the UNGP framework, using the synergy of the combination of state, private sector and civil society parties to achieve its goals. The Alliance will collaborate with the business community at international, regional, national and local levels that respecting international human rights and labor standards is a smart business choice that can also contribute to positive social and sustainability impacts on poor and marginalized people. At the same time, as a network of CSO actors, the Alliance will also play a strong watchdog role to actively monitor the implementation of international standards by governments and businesses. CSOs, including trade unions, will advocate for social responsibility towards the business community. Through social dialogue and the sharing of best practices, businesses will be convinced to adjust policies and practices in compliance with international human rights and labor standards. To do this effectively, the Alliance strengthens the lobby and advocacy skills of its local CSO partners.