31 August 2022
By Moritz Kleine-Brockhoff | The Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom Southeast and East Asia
The Friedrich Naumann Foundation (FNF) for Freedom Southeast and East Asia and AmerBON, Advocates have published a GuideKit for Small and Medium Enterprises on Human Rights Compliance regarding the Environment and Labour. The book, written by six human rights experts, contains eight chapters that deals with issues ranging from due diligence and internal assessment to environmental risks and fair recruitment. As the publication is a GuideKit, a self-assessment template, a validation template, and a scoring template are included. Finally, the book describes a process to handle worker’s grievances as well as steps to address issues and concerns raised by external parties.
Edmund Bon Tai Soon and his staff at AmerBON initiated the book. Edmund is a human rights lawyer in Kuala Lumpur, who previously served as Malaysia’s representative to the ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights (AICHR). He also chairs the Malaysia National Working Group for an ASEAN Human Rights Mechanism, which is part of the Regional Working Group for an ASEAN Human Rights Mechanism, which has been a partner of the Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom for decades.
“The GuideKit is a first-of-its-kind regional guide containing essential and practical tools that SMEs can use to meet their Business and Human Rights obligations under the UN Guiding Principles. It simplifies applicable concepts and standards, contains key tools, and provides solutions SMEs can adopt”, writes Dr. Mohd Munir Bin Abdul Majid, the Chairman of the ASEAN Business Advisory Council (ASEAN BAC). Le Thi Nam Huong, Head of the Human Rights Division at the Secretariat of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) calls the book “a valuable framework to help enterprises manage human rights risks and address adverse human rights impacts in their business activities. This GuideKit is also an essential reference resource for other stakeholders such as non-governmental organisations, labour associations, and environmental groups who work alongside businesses to tackle human rights issues and stand up for fundamental rights policies”.
Thank you to Edmund Bon, his staff, and all writers and contributors for making this book possible. The Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom is honoured to be associated with it.