Human Rights

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White House Imposes Sanctions on Venezuela

On March 9, 2015, pursuant to authority contained in the recently enacted Venezuela Defense of Human Rights and Civil Society Act (Act), President Obama issued an executive order (EO) declaring a national emergency with...more

U.N. Guiding Principles Reporting Framework Released by the Human Rights Reporting and Assurance Frameworks Initiative

In late February, after 18 months of research and consultation, a new Reporting Framework has been released to help companies report on their human rights performance in a manner aligned with the expectations set forth in the...more

China Update - February 2015

In This Issue: - Quote of the Week - U.S.-China Relations - Trade - Excerpt from Quote of the week: “We constantly remind Chinese leaders that recognizing and guaranteeing the Chinese people their...more

Africa Update - February 2015

In This Issue: - Leading the News - United States – Africa Relations - North Africa - East Africa - West Africa - Sub - Saharan Africa - General Africa News - Excerpt from Leading the...more

District of Columbia Passes Two New Non-Discrimination Laws Impacting Employers

Earlier this week, D.C.’s Mayor signed two new measures amending the D.C. Human Rights Act (“DCHRA”) to prohibit (1) discrimination against employees of religiously-affiliated educational institutions on the basis of sexual...more

Appellate Division Panel Issues Ruling Broadly Interpreting New York State Human Rights Law

On January 14, 2015, in a case of first impression, the New York Supreme Court, Appellate Division, Second Department held that an employee can sufficiently demonstrate his membership in a protected class by virtue of his...more

Illinois Offers Greater Protections for Pregnant Workers

Employers should take note of the newly effective amendment to the Illinois Human Rights Act, which enhances protections for employees affected by pregnancy or childbirth, imposes accommodation requirements on employers, and...more

Missouri Court of Appeals Further Restricts Arbitration Agreements

The Missouri Court of Appeals rang in the New Year by issuing an opinion that continues the trend in Missouri of restricting the enforceability of arbitration clauses. In light of this decision, employers should revisit their...more

Alien Tort Case Development: Ninth Circuit Affirms Dismissal of Claims Against Occidental Petroleum

In mid-December, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the dismissal of claims filed pursuant to the Alien Tort Statute (“ATS”) against Occidental Petroleum. Plaintiffs in the case argued that Occidental should be held...more

Can Saks Fifth Avenue Legally Discriminate Against Transgender Employees?

Saks Fifth Avenue’s latest fashion trend is receiving mixed reviews from critics across the nation. According to a discrimination and retaliation complaint filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of...more

Protecting the Rights of Children Should Be Integral to Every Corporate Social Responsibility Strategy

Consideration of the rights of children should be integral to any Corporate Social Responsibility (“CSR”) strategy or policy. Traditionally, companies have focused on reducing and eliminating the use of child labor in their...more

Flying High: The Human Rights Implications of Investing In Drones

Civilian application of drone technology has increased dramatically in recent years. The burgeoning civilian opportunities are a potential boon for investors, who view this emerging market as one that will expand long into...more

US Authorizes Sanctions and Export Controls Against Venezuela

On December 18, 2014, President Obama signed into law the Venezuela Defense of Human Rights and Civil Society Act of 2014 (the “Act”). The legislation authorizes the United States to impose sanctions against certain...more

International Migrants Day and Operating with Respect for the Rights of Migrant Workers

December 18 is International Migrants Day. Companies in a wide variety of industry sectors must address the human rights-related risks specific to employing migrant workers. These workers are especially vulnerable to human...more

Africa Update - December 2014 #2

In This Issue: - Leading the News - United States – Africa Relations - North Africa - East Africa - West Africa - Sub-Saharan Africa - General Africa News - Excerpt from...more

San Francisco Retail Workers’ Bill of Rights

On November 25, 2014, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors passed two ordinances that are collectively referred to as the San Francisco Retail Workers’ Bill of Rights: the “Hours and Retention Protections for Formula Retail...more

Miami-Dade County Expands its Human Rights Law to Ban Discrimination on the Basis of Gender Identity and Gender Expression

On December 2, 2014, Miami-Dade County Commission amended the County’s Human Rights Ordinance (Chapter 11A of the Code of Ordinances of Miami Dade County, Florida) to prohibit discrimination based on gender identity and...more

D.C. Circuit to Re-Consider Whether SEC Disclosure Rule Aimed at Curbing Human Rights Abuses in the Democratic Republic of the...

In an interesting and uncommon intersection between securities law, curbing human rights abuses and freedom of speech under the First Amendment, the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia recently agreed...more

Africa Update - November 2014

In This Issue: - Leading the News - United States – Africa Relations - North Africa - East Africa - West Africa - Sub-Saharan Africa - General Africa News - Excerpt from Leading the...more

Alien Tort Case Development: The Second Circuit Assesses the Appropriate Focus of Jurisdictional Inquiries

On October 23, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals issued a decision in Mastafa v. Chevron Corp., a case filed against Chevron Corp. and BNP Paribas pursuant to the Alien Tort Statute (“ATS”). The court upheld the District...more

Ontario Divisional Court Upholds Controversial Award of the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal

In Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board v Fair, the Ontario Divisional Court upheld two noteworthy decisions of the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal. In the Tribunal’s first decision, it found that the Hamilton-Wentworth...more

Alien Tort Case Development: Litigation Against Exxon Mobil Corporation May Proceed

In late September, the District Court for the District of Columbia ruled that two closely related cases filed against Exxon Mobil Corporation, and several of the company’s subsidiaries, could proceed. Plaintiffs in both...more

Achieving Justice And Human Rights In An Era Of Climate Disruption – New IBA Report

On 22 September 2014, the International Bar’s Association task force on Climate Change Justice and Human Rights released its new report Achieving Justice and Human Rights in an Era of Climate Disruption in the wake of the UN...more

Illinois Extends Sexual Harassment Protection to Unpaid Interns

Further extending the Illinois Human Rights Act’s already expansive protection of victims of sexual harassment, Illinois Governor Pat Quinn last month signed into law a bill amending the Act to protect unpaid interns against...more

Act Now Advisory: Illinois Extends Sexual Harassment Protection to Unpaid Interns

The Governor of Illinois has signed into law a bill (the "Amendment") that amends the Illinois Human Rights Act to prohibit sexual harassment against unpaid interns. The Amendment becomes effective on January 1, 2015....more

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