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The UK 2013 NAP notes in the chapter on UK Government and access to remedy for human right abuses resulting from business activity that [page 17]:

“The UK sees its own provision of judicial remedy options as an important element in the remedy mix. Non-judicial grievance mechanisms based on engagement between the parties involved are also an important option. This can be done through an internal company grievance procedure or through arbitration, adjudication, mediation, conciliation and negotiation. Such services can be advised on or offered by independent dispute resolution companies, the Ombudsman, the Citizens’ Advice Bureau, the Government regulator in certain sectors, or the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS).

Finally, the UK National Contact Point (NCP) considers allegations of non compliance by UK companies with the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises. The NCP will seek to mediate an agreement between the parties. But where this is not possible, a determination of whether the enterprise has acted inconsistently with the Guidelines is published and available for public dissemination. http://www.bis.gov.uk/nationalcontactpoint

The UK 2016 Updated NAP discusses non-judicial mechanism in the section titled Access to remedy for human rights abuses resulting from business activity [page 20]:

“We also provide a number of state-based non-judicial mechanisms, including:

  • The UK National Contact Point (NCP) which considers allegations of non-compliance by UK companies with the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises. The NCP seeks to mediate an agreement between the parties. But where this is not possible, a determination of whether the enterprise has acted inconsistently with the Guidelines is published and available for public dissemination.
  • Equality and Human Rights Commission which monitors and promotes human rights compliance and can conduct inquiries, for example it has conducted inquiries into the meat and poultry processing and home care sectors.
  • A considerable number of Ombudsman, Regulators and other Government Complaints Offices in industry sectors that have various mechanisms to hear complaints, impose sanctions and award compensation. For example the Health and Safety Executive, Financial Conduct Authority, Financial Ombudsman Service and Advertising Standards Authority.
  • The Groceries Code Adjudicator is an independent adjudicator that oversees the relationship between supermarkets and their suppliers. It ensures that large supermarkets treat their direct suppliers lawfully and fairly, investigates complaints and arbitrates in disputes.
  • In addition, there are independent organizations that support non-judicial grievance mechanisms in the UK. This includes internal company grievance procedures and arbitration, adjudication, mediation, conciliation and negotiation. Such services can be advised on or offered by independent dispute resolution companies, the Citizens’ Advice Bureau and the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS).”

The UK 2016 Updated NAP on actions taken to promote access to remedy states that the Government [page 21] has:

“commissioned an independent survey of the UK provision of remedy to help our understanding of judicial and non-judicial remedies available to victims of human rights harms involving business enterprises”.

The UK 2016 Updated NAP states under Government commitments [page 22] that the government will:

“continue to ensure that the UK provides access to judicial and non-judicial remedies to victims of human rights harms linked to business activity. We will keep the UK provision of remedy under review.”

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