“Racism continues to be prevalent in our societies. We must raise our voices against all expressions of racism and instances of racist behaviour. We urgently need to dismantle racist structures and reform racist institutions.” — UN Secretary-General António Guterres (May 2020)
Racism does not exist in a vacuum. Today’s most sustainable companies know that diversity is a strength, not a weakness. To pave the way towards real change, all of society — Governments, the private sector, civil society, academia, local authorities and more — must work together to reduce inequalities, strengthen social protection systems, eliminate all forms of discrimination and provide equal opportunities. This makes clear the critical importance of achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, ensuring no one is left behind.
The Ten Principles of the United Nations Global Compact provide a universal framework for the business community to embed human rights, labour, environment and anti-corruption deep into strategies and operations. Rooted in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, our human rights principles specifically call on business to support and respect the protection of internationally proclaimed human rights and make sure that they are not complicit in human rights abuses. The corporate responsibility to respect and support human rights is critical to eliminate all forms of racism.
There is an urgent need for leadership in recognizing and pushing back against systemic racism everywhere. The UN Global Compact is urging business leaders to speak up and use their influence to root out systemic racism and stand in solidarity with those facing injustice.