The Every Lawyer

BHR Guide - Mineral Extraction with Lloyd Lipsett

Episode Summary

Julia welcomes Lloyd Lipsett, co-author of the CBA BHR Guide.

Episode Notes

Canadian Bar Association - Business and Human Rights (

Lloyd Lipsett is an international human rights lawyer with over 20 years of experience working with leading companies, governments, national human rights institutions, civil society organizations and indigenous peoples.  He has developed a niche in the field of business and human rights, with a focus on implementing human rights due diligence processes (HRDD) and human rights impact assessments (HRIA) in challenging contexts.  In particular, he has led or participated in over 30 HRIAs and has conducted over 75 site visits to implement HRIA or HRDD processes around the world.

Episode Transcription

BHR Guide - Mineral Extraction with Lloyd Lipsett

[Start of recorded material 00:00:00]

Prologue:          [Music] This is the “Every Lawyer”, presented by the Canadian Bar Association. 

Julia:                 Hello and welcome to the “Every Lawyer”. Today, we take a second and closer look at the CBA Business and Human Rights Guide. I am Julia [unintelligible 00:00:17]. Our guest today is Lloyd Lipsett. Lloyd is an international human rights lawyer with over 20 years of experience working with leading companies, governments, national human rights institutions, civil society organizations and Indigenous peoples.

                          He has developed a niche in the field of business and human rights, with a focus on implementing human rights due diligence processes, the HRDD and human rights impact assessments, the HRIA. And you’ve done that in a very challenging context. 

                          In particular, Lloyd has led or participated in over 30 HRIAs and has conducted over 75 site visits to implement HRIA or HRDD processes around the world. So that’s very impressive, I must say. 

He regularly advises senior leaders and managers in companies and within governments, and other organizations as well, on how to manage the increasingly complex social expectations, legal requirements and business risks associated with human rights. Finally, also co-authored the CBA’s Business and Human Rights Guide, as if you were not busy enough already. 

                          So you are on the ground right now. You are all over the globe. It feels like you’ve been travelling all around Africa when we were trying to make this podcast. And literally, you’re building – to quote the BHR guide, a more just and equitable future for all. No joke, I feel like you’re really doing that. So welcome to the Every Lawyer, Lloyd Lipsett. It’s a real pleasure to have you this morning for us and this afternoon for you.

Lloyd:               Thank you.

Julia:                 So where are you right now?

Lloyd:               I’m sitting in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, which is my new home base in eastern Africa for working with companies and other stakeholders on these issues around the business of human rights. 

Julia:                 And what got you started in the first place?

Lloyd:               It’s been throughout my career. I even back as far as law school, I had the opportunity of working with the Canadian Organization Rights and Democracy as an intern. And so that kind of nourished my interest and eventually a passion for international human rights work. And obviously, that implies international travel. Which sounds glamorous at first. But over, you know, over a long stretch, it is something to manage and can be challenging on a person. But yeah, I’ve been travelling for 25 years, and a lot here to Africa. So it’s nice actually to have, for once, a base and not just be flying in and out. 

Julia:                 And you mentioned also the fact that you enjoy working with people. So do you get to be like with the communities more, or is it more the people – you mean your colleagues or both?

Lloyd:               You mentioned in the introduction, you know, Human Rights Impact Assessment, Human Rights Due Diligence, human rights impact assessments tend to be a little bit more like you come in as a third party and you’re doing interviews with different people affected by projects, so company people, government people, community people, workers. But when you’re doing human rights due diligence, there’s a bit more of an emphasis on capacity building. And that can be on both sides. 

It can be capacity building with communities or Indigenous people on how they can interact with big projects. Or it can be more capacity building with managers and different departments in a big company about how they have to implement their human rights responsibilities. So I’d say, you know, it’s a combination of interviewing and engaging with the “affected people” or “affected stakeholders”, so workers and community members, and with a big focus on vulnerable groups. And then engaging with and building capacity and helping companies put in place management systems that are respectful of their human rights responsibilities.

Julia:                 OK. I find it very interesting. I mean, really, it goes close to my heart. Because I’m working in human rights and I find your job very very impressive. So, can you tell us a little bit more how serious are the human rights challenges that can arise with Canadian multinational extractive companies like oil and gas and mining?

Lloyd:               Yeah. I mean the – I’ll talk first about kind of how the challenges are in terms of when there are allegations or negative impacts on people’s human rights in faraway places, there are challenges in terms of reputation. You know, nobody wants to wake up and have their company name in the Globe and Mail or La Press, or whatever. 

So there’s, you know, reputational media is paying a lot more attention to this. And media – with social media it circulates quickly. There’s kind of a reputational angle. There’s a legal angle. We’ve seen some lawsuits in Canada about the conduct of Canadian extractive companies overseas and those have gone all the way up to the Supreme Court. Which just said, you know, we are actually going to hear cases in Canada about the conduct of companies over broad under certain circumstances. But you know, the door is open a bit there. 

                          And then, also, the investors are paying attention to this as well. So that’s an interesting angle that we’re seeing more and more that shareholders, investors, financial institutions are really paying attention to this, because they have reputations of their own to uphold and standards of their own. So there’s a lot of different pressures or consequences. I’d say there’s pressures to get it right that are more and more clear. And there are consequences more and more when you get it wrong. Supply chain is a huge focus. So it’s not just the conduct of the company itself but it could be its contractors, its suppliers. 

And often, in these countries abroad, you may be also having some sort of partnership with governments, which may not have the greatest track record on human rights. So it’s that linkage or connection to the conduct of third parties that also is a real source of risk and potential impact. 

And around the range of issues, when you take a human rights lens, it’s broad, right? You know, human rights covers worker’s rights, working conditions, it covers community-related issues, land-related issues, security, so there’s a really wide range of broad issues that can become human rights impacts or allegations if you do things wrong. And the framework of business in human rights has given, you know, a tool and a language for affected people and other stakeholders to address those issues. 

Julia:                 I always feel like, at least, that oil and gas and mining are like the real bad guys, or the worse ones. Is it true? Like in this world of business and human rights, are they really the worst?

Lloyd:               I don’t think that’s necessarily fair. But you can understand why they have been under attention because these are massive projects that have very visible impacts. And the track record of those industries in the past has not always been very great, whether it be in terms of impacts on just the environment, the community, et cetera; but also some of the connections with different governments and so on. So you can understand why their industries are under the spotlight.

But because of that spotlight, they also – some of the major international companies have the most – the strongest policies and the strongest attention. They have a lot of pressure on them. So, in terms of good performers, there are some good ones there. 

                          I think, you know, other resource-intensive industries, whether it be agriculture, renewable sectors, because we like to think about renewables as very good from an environment perspective, it’s not oil, right? So oil is particularly under the spotlight because, not just of human rights, but also environmental/climate change issues. And we like to think about renewables, but renewables also take land. They also have impacts on communities. There’s many of the same issues that you get with mining, and oil and gas that are in renewables. 

And I think there’s more awareness that they also can have human rights consequences. Yeah. And the supply chain angle, really, then, coming back to all sorts of consumer goods, to the food we eat and agriculture, there’s a lot of attention there as well.

                          And I think some of those industries that may not have been in the human rights spotlight to date may actually have further to go because they haven’t been subject to so many pressures in the past. 

Julia:                 And you have led, or you participated, as I said, in over 30 human rights impact assessments. And you conducted over 75 site visits to implement human rights impact assessments or human rights due diligence processes around the world. As you can see, we’ve done our research. But could you talk to us a little bit about the processes of both, because you did make a difference before, but I would like just to understand better what’s the difference between the two of them and how effective you feel they are?

Lloyd:               So the – it’s good to put those two questions together, because, kind of, one leads to the other. But where this started is human rights impact assessments are a bit – I like to call them the younger cousin or sister of environmental and social impact assessments. So there are processes that are designed to anticipate/evaluate the impacts, either actual or potential, that a business or a project – it could be even applied to a government program, that it would have an effect on people. And then, to then develop some recommendations about mitigation or management measures to prevent or minimize those impacts. It’s very much from a human rights perspective.

We’re focusing primarily on minimizing, or reducing, or avoiding harms on people. To some degree, you could also think about trying to maximize positive outcomes. But the focus tends to be on, you know, minimizing or avoiding the negative impacts on people’s human rights. But the way the practice evolved with human rights impact assessment tends to be quite an in-depth study. It’s a long-term.

I don’t want to say just a research process. But there’s a lot of engagement with the different stakeholder groups to try and identify what are the key issues. Has there actually been some impacts? What is the company – if it’s about a company, what’s the company doing? What’s good about it? Where are their gaps? What needs to be improved, et cetera, et cetera. 

                          And I think the practice is those studies take a long time and they don’t always have the intended results in terms of follow up action. So there’s a question mark about how effective are human rights impact assessments. And I’ve worked on ones that have been more effective and others that have been less effective.

When you approach this from a human rights due diligence angle, human rights due diligence is defined as more of an ongoing process in which assessing impacts or risks is just one step in a process. And after that, you need to integrate and act upon the findings of the assessment. You need to monitor and track the effectiveness of those actions and you need to communicate. 

And that cycle of ongoing human rights due diligence was spelled out in the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, which interestingly, doesn’t say anywhere that companies have to do human rights impact assessments. That was just kind of a thing that some organizations or some groups’ tool that they promoted. And, certainly, it’s relevant to human rights due diligence but it’s not the actual requirement. 

And also, we see, particularly in Europe, these movements towards mandatory human rights due diligence legislation over there. And again, it’s mandatory human rights due diligence not mandatory human rights impact assessments. So that kind of trend has gone. I’ve started to frame my work more as human rights due diligence, although my speciality is to help with that first step of assessing the impact. So it’s still relevant, it’s still part of it. But I like that broader framing because it does imply that once the assessment is done the work isn’t done, t’s just actually starting. 

Because they need to – I like the simplest way of saying, the integration uptake, “I think the company needs to develop an action plan”. OK. So let’s work on your action plan and then let’s track your action plan and then help you communicate externally and with your affected stakeholders what are your actions and where are you trying to go with this. So it helps to make that transition from a study that can go onto a shelf into something that’s more dynamic and gets integrated into the business. 

Julia:                 Yeah. So do you – usually do you have both? Like do you start with the assessment and then do you do the due diligence?

Lloyd:               The assessment phase is, you know, a logical place to start the due diligence process, because you’ve got to know what are your priorities, where are your job square, your biggest risks in terms of impacts on people. So the assessment is itself part of human rights due diligence, but it also leads to further due diligence. So sometimes you call it, you know, a human rights due diligence assessment or you can call it still a human rights impact assessment, but the outcome needs to be recommendations for ongoing due diligence.

                          And I think the other important piece of the framing is when you’re doing human rights impact assessment, the focus is a lot on who are the assessors. And it’s like, you know, independent experts who are coming in. Whereas, human rights due diligence is more about building the capacity of the company to assume its responsibilities for this. So the focus that you actually – in the end, once the report or the study is done is more on what are you as the company going to do with this and how are you going to take it forward? So it shifts a little bit the attention from the assessor to the actual company as the person or the entity to implement this. 

Julia:                 You mentioned the 2011 UN Guiding Principle on the Business and Human Rights. I’ve read it a little bit, I’ve worked a little bit on this. But I’d like to have your take on it. Like do you feel that the UN GPs on the business and human rights is being applied and have been adapted internationally or it’s more like a beautiful principle that’s a bit up in the air?

Lloyd:               I think, you know, in terms of international human rights instruments it has made a lot of progress in a relatively short time, just over 10 years. And it has influenced other multilateral policies, particularly around the lenders. So, you know, it’s integrated into other codes and policies for responsible business enterprise. There’s been a lot of uptake of them by individual companies but also by industry associations. So I think they’ve been very effective on the policy level and I don’t think anyone would attest that they’re the key reference when it comes to this business of human rights piece. So I think they’ve done their work there. 

                          You see a lot of work – because they are at a pretty high level, they’re guiding principles, as the title says. So there’s a lot of work around providing additional guidance that is more industry specific or on certain components of the guiding principles because there’s more – and you know, that’s one of the things I get asked, you know, help companies with guidance for their operations. How do you, you know, really operationalize this for a mining site in country x, because it’s – you know, these are high-level principles, what does that mean in practice on the ground? So helping to translate that there is work to be done. But, you know, I think industry associations and companies that have multiple sites are helping to do that through their procedures and so on.

So, on one hand, to be very positive and optimistic, it has made huge strides in a relatively short period of time, quite remarkable. However – there is a however part, it is not the majority of companies or countries around the world that are on the business and human rights bandwagon. You know, there are big areas of the world with powerful economic interests that are not really taking these onboard. 

The late John Ruggie, a Canadian, who was the author of the Guiding Principles, he said on the 10-year anniversary of the Guiding Principles, he was, you know, remarking on the progress, but he said, “The Guiding Principles are relevant to 40 percent of the world’s economy. We still have 60 percent to go”. And I think that does help to put in context. 

And you know, Russia, China, Middle East, you know, there are areas that the majority of companies, I won’t say all of them, but the majority, probably aren’t picking up the Guiding Principles at breakfast. 

Julia:                 Yeah. No. I don’t think so. They’re like, “The Guiding what? I’m sorry”. Yeah. Like, I’m sure. I mean, but in Canada, for instance, I know we follow them. But we have other tools. Because you mentioned, we need sometimes – some companies, they need some guidance. I mean, now we do have the BHR guide, thanks to the CBA. But we have other tools, like in the law, do we have, for instance, you mentioned the HR assessment, the due diligence, do we have this in our legislation in Canada, to, you know, force companies to do it?

Lloyd:               Canada is funny. I mean with that we promoted these standards, particularly for the extractive sector, but again, in kind of a voluntary way. But the attention – now we have the ombudsperson for responsible enterprise that’s pushing at other sectors, like the apparel sector and so on, around a set of standards that would include the UN Guiding Principles, but in terms of legislation, not yet. 

I know there are some legislative initiatives around supply chain due diligence, whether that takes the form of a kind of broader mandatory human right due diligence law or a more targeted one around modern slavery. There are different kinds of models out there and different proposals that have been brought forward. But Canada is not as far ahead as, say, some of the European countries on these things. And so you see it more at the industry level, and the individual companies that are taking leadership on this. 

And to the point of the CBA guidance, I think this is one of the things where lawyers can play a role in advising companies that these standards are important. They’re important for whether it be legal, financial, reputational reasons and the law. The soft law is hardening globally. So it would be good advice to companies to get a bit ahead of the curve on this, because it will come. 

Julia:                 Actually, I’d like to know how does it work? Like does the company call you when they want to do an assessment? And if so, why did they decide to do that? Is it because – for preference? You mentioned sometimes reputation. But like what’s the reason to do that?

Lloyd:               It has evolved. At the beginning it was, “Holy crap, our company is in the Globe and Mail”, or “We’ve been called to go in front of parliamentary committee to answer questions about human rights”; it usually was negative, that we have an allegation about something bad that’s happened at our site somewhere faraway, and that was the motivation. And, “We need to respond to this”. And so, one of the tools that has been suggested to us is to do a human rights impact assessment, that would be a way for us to address this in, hopefully, a responsible manner. So that was the kind of first wave. 

The second wave was companies that had been through those ‘holy crap’ moments had actually started to put in strong policies to say, when we start a new operation we’re going to do a human rights impact assessment at the beginning so that we can put in place the system. So that we can demonstrate that we’re doing what we’re required to do under human rights standards.

                          So the next kind of series of work that I did was more – a bit more proactive. But it tended to be from companies that at some time in their past had a tougher human rights incident and had learned their lesson and had put in place appropriate policy framework around managing that going forward. 

The third wave, which is really seen in the last few years, pushes it forward even a little bit further; it’s the investors, the banks. The banks are now saying, “We’re not going to lend you the money to build your pipeline” or “We’re not going to lend the money to build your mines…”, and these are very expensive things to build, “… if you don’t do your human rights due diligence”. So there’s a lot of incentives that are coming from the lenders.

And frankly, it’s very effective. Because the person that’s standing between you and the hundreds of millions, or even billions of dollars you need to build a major infrastructure project or extractive project; they matter. And they’re seeing this as a very important source of leverage and getting projects and companies to be quite proactive. 

And what’s great about it for me, as a practitioner, is it’s so much easier and constructive to come in in advance and be trying to anticipate and address things. It’s such an easier conversation to have when we’re talking about human rights impacts in a hypothetical way than when you come in after and there are allegations of really serious things happening, and there’s conflict, and there’s tension between the company and the community or the workforce. And that can be very difficult. 

And also, even to find out what really happened. Because, you know, it’s polarized. So it’s much better when you’re looking forward than looking backwards.

Julia:                 Yeah. And why the banks? Why did the banks decide now to do that? Reputation again?

Lloyd:               Yeah. I think reputation comes into it. And the NGO’s civil society organizations have been clever about sitting – you know, follow the money. And we, actually – we can put more pressure on a bank than we can necessarily on a government. And so the NGOs have been strategic about lobbying the financial sector on human rights, in general, but also on specific projects that they feel are troublesome. 

But I think, also, at the international level, within these different frameworks, there’s been a slow realization that banks are businesses themselves and they have human rights responsibilities. So they’ve also come along in terms of developing their own policies and risk assessments and so on.

And when they apply these filters from a risk-based perspective, you’re going to get an extractive industry project in a developing country that doesn’t have strong governance of rule of law that’s going to usually get flagged, so there’s going to be attention. If we’re going to lend money in this context, there is an elevated risk around human rights. And therefore, we must do x, y, z.

Julia:                 It makes me think, when we talk about the big international law nowadays, we realize it’s not only states. It’s also, well, humans for sure. But also, I mean we have new actors coming in like banks and businesses. And I think that’s one of the examples of the great impacts of that, is that [unintelligible 00:27:10] is nationalized. It’s getting really – it’s really up and coming. There’s more and more impacts that I feel like we have internationally. It’s very great. I love to hear that. And I mean, it’s really a positive talk today. I love it.

And to continue with that, I’d like to ask you, like, do you have – without naming names, but just some businesses you’ve worked with and that you’ve seen great accomplishment? 

Lloyd:               Yeah. I mean, there’s some of the really big – I’ve worked with the biggest, you know, oil and gas mining companies in the world. These aren’t necessarily Canadian companies anymore, but, you know, they’re international ones. And I’ve run with them from early days, when they were putting in place their policies around human rights assessment, and then seeing them play out more proactively on the ground. 

And it’s, I think so, formed that way to see a big company put in place a robust policy and procedure that kind of has legs overtime to when they develop new projects that human right is part of the, I don’t want to say DNA, but kind of, into the building guide in right at the beginning of the process. That’s rewarding from a kind of – a systems place. 

But the most rewarding piece is when you see the outcomes on people when they have proactive initiative with their workforce. When they – for instance, here in Tanzania, I recently participated with a big extractive project that signed the equivalent of an impact benefit agreement with Indigenous peoples in Tanzania, when these are not recognized as such by the government. And it was a very positive occasion because the traditional leaders of these Indigenous groups were saying this is – you know, no other company, not even the government, consults us like this. And this is a great precedent for us in Tanzania. Those are the feel-good moments. 

                          And the other piece I think that is rewarding is also, sometimes working with smaller companies. And in the mining sector, some of the Canadian companies I’ve worked with are smaller ones. And they’re more nimble, you know. And so when they kind of pick up the human rights piece, you’re often talking immediately to the board of directors and the CEO, and if they get it in their head, they can act on things very quickly and efficiently. More so than a big massive multinational company. And so, sometimes that’s really rewarding to work with a smaller more nimble company; that once they get it, they can run with it quick. 

                          And then, the final thing I’d say is, you know, to do this work, I’ve tried to also work with other – you know, on the other sides of the equation. So I have done work with government; I’ve done work with multilaterals; I’ve done work with Indigenous communities in Canada. And that can also be very rewarding. Particularly, I think about when working with Indigenous communities, it’s helping to get them a seat at the table and give them a voice in projects that are, you know, maybe otherwise a little bit overwhelming.

So that also can be a rewarding piece. And it helps to keep you honest in the sense that you can see things on both sides of the equation.

Julia:                 Definitely. And I love that you mentioned Indigenous people, because they are always probably one of the first people to be impacted.

Lloyd:               Yeah.

Julia:                 Yeah. And I mean, I was about to ask you about a quote that we have. And I would like to have your view on it. Because I feel like this is the opposite of what you’ve been telling me. But the CBA BHR Guide quotes a report from July 2018, a report of the UN GA, the General Assembly. “Business lawyers, both in-house counsel and external firms, have a unique position for shaping the path an enterprise may take”. So that is basically what you were saying, and I think you would agree with that. 

But then, it also says that, “Business lawyers are not meeting that expectation. Often they are seen as one of the main obstacles to adapting effective human rights due diligence with a traditional narrow focus on legal risks”. And then, the report called for “A change in mindset among mainstream business lawyers,” which you are obviously not. Would you agree with this quote?

Lloyd:               You know, of course there’s a grain of truth in that. But I think things are evolving. And, you know, maybe – I think business lawyers will be aware of the, kind of, international trends around, whether you call it ESG or CSR, or whatever name you give it, I think people can see that these frameworks are evolving, perhaps, you know, more than even just a few years ago. This is gathering momentum. 

But in the worst cases, bringing an overly, let’s call it ‘traditional legal focus’ on this, can have a negative effect on companies doing good human rights due diligence because of a few factors I think. One is, good due diligence is predicated on good stakeholder engagement, and there may be fear of engaging with affected stakeholders or critical NGOs for legal or other, you know, reasons. They can feel that that may be compromising and it’s better just to kind of zip it. 

Because if we stick our neck or our head up, we’re going to – we might get ourselves in more trouble. And that kind of attitude that’s sometimes driven by lawyers is against, kind of, the fundamental way of doing good due diligence, which is through engagement and dialogue.

                          The other area where I see lawyers can be a bit of a hang up is when companies have negative impacts, they have a responsibility to provide remedy. And the UN Guiding Principles were very helpful in framing that that. You know, they deliberately chose to have kind of soft language to accept that companies will have impacts.

But part of your responsibility then is to provide remedy, whether you do that through an in-house process, like a grievance mechanism, or through other processes, government or otherwise, you need to provide remedy. And sometimes, I find, when the lawyers get involved, their fearing a big lawsuit. And so they won’t admit that we’ve done something wrong and that we can provide remedy in an effective way. And so this whole part of remedy gets seen through a lawyer’s eyes, which is all about, you know, a big lawsuit and expensive, and all of this. 

Whereas, remedy should be something that, for many cases, could be resolved much more through mediation and dialogue at the operation level and then you just move on. 

                          And yeah, getting those critters involved, sometimes they – they put the brakes on there. So I think those are a couple of areas where, I guess, learning about the spirit of and the requirements of due diligence will be helpful. And also, the experience that companies that have done good human rights due diligence have gotten into less legal trouble than the ones that don’t. So, I think, also, the practice out there shows that some of these risks that are maybe – or fears, from the legal perspective, might be overblown in terms of how they actually play out on the ground.

                          I honestly don’t know what the pressure points are. But the strongest one that I’m seeing is the supply chain angle. So, just as an example, I’m going over to DRC for a Chinese company. It’s the first time I’ve ever been hired by a Chinese company. And the pressure is supply chain. And they want to have their supply chain certified, and the certification standards now have human rights in it. 

And so, if they want to sell their cobalt to Tesla to make nice electric cars, then they need to do human rights due diligence. So I think – and, you know, whatever people will say about Chinese companies, they’re shrewd business people. And so I think if there’s a business case for it – I think with, you know, that – and the same might go for other areas, is if we don’t make this into overly rhetorical human rights stuff, it can easily get into geopolitical stuff, where you don’t want to go with the company. 

But making the business case for them in a way that that understands, then probably, actually, they’ll do it. So that’s – but I’m going to figure out through this, with my next engagements, what is the – each company has its own nuance on the business case, right, so figuring out how to articulate a non-political business case to companies from different parts of the world, I think that’s part of the solution. And supply chain, obviously, is a great entry point. And it’s a good example of where, you know, the UN Guiding Principles have crept in into these certification standards for different mineral supply chains.

                          And that’s a great example of how they’ve kind of done their work. And so, you know, we’re not necessarily talking about UN Guiding Principles, but when you read the human rights section of this certification thing, it’s cut and paste from the UN Guiding Principles. But it’s now such-and-such’s mineral standard. 

Julia:                 Do lawyers could – maybe check the CBA BHR Guides? Do you have like some guidance on that as well? I’m sure you do. Like, you know, what you just said, that due diligence, actually, it might be a better way to avoid those risks. Should they – are you – like I’m trying to – I’m doing some –

Lloyd:               Some PR. 

Julia:                 Like PR here.

Lloyd:               Yeah.

Julia:                 I guess we don’t bother – we don’t create anymore, we just copy and paste what’s already been done. 

Lloyd:               Well, I think the guide was done quite deliberately in a way that, you know, there are some of the core concepts in there around human rights due diligence. Also, there’s a lot of great references for people that want to know more about this or that element. It also provides a good overview of the international and domestic frameworks, laws and policies that are contributing to this overall trend in the direction of the business and human rights. And then it has some kind of more practical examples or areas around specific areas of due diligence on specific human rights issues that can be, I guess, illustrated, if that’s the overall approach to due diligence. 

But it needs to also touchdown in terms of specific human rights issues. So it’s – I hope the guide is useful for people, if perhaps as an entry point. But there’s lots of other guidance out there and there’s a lot of references and links in the guidance for people that are interested in learning more. 

Julia:                 Thank you so much. I feel like it’s been a pleasure. Honestly, I’ve learned a lot. And you are a very good teacher, a really good mentor. I don’t know if you do that often? But I really have learned. It has been very very clear. So thank you Lloyd for taking the time with us this morning and this afternoon for you. I feel like you’re one of the lucky ones who really get to see the impacts of what you’re doing really concretely, which is very great. 

Lloyd:               Well, I mean, I guess a part of it is saying that the work is an attempt, a small contribution, to try and make these high-minded principles real on the ground. For me, that’s really where I’m at in my career is trying to translate these – you know, these laws and policies into practice on the ground. And also, to build capacity of Africans, because, you know, as a Canadian, I’ve come over here hundreds of times to Africa with, you know, a law background, et cetera, and to be there as a consultant and an advisor – but then I go back home. 

And then, I think part of this next phase of my career is also trying to build capacity of young African professionals so that they can do this work themselves and have African solutions for Africans. And I think, you know, human rights is supposed to be universal. It’s great that us, as Canadians, we can contribute to that. But ultimately, if this is going to have legs, it needs to be engrained in the companies and the people over here. 

                          So I want to spend more time focusing on, sort of, capacity building mentorship but on this side of the pond. 


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