Last week, I gave the keynote address at an Extraordinary Plenary Meeting of the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights, held in Ottawa, Ontario on September 15-16, 2011. (Note: I did not deliver my remarks in my capacity as Senior Advisor to Foley Hoag’s CSR practice. As noted previously on this blog, however, Foley Hoag serves as the Secretariat for the Voluntary Principles.)
In my remarks, I observed that the Voluntary Principles "deals with the most palpable and widely recognized of all human rights: the physical security and integrity of the person." I also recognized that the multi-stakeholder nature of the Voluntary Principle provides critical support to companies operating in difficult environments. Specifically, I noted that "companies need granular advice and assistance from home and host states alike. They need to be able to count on the in-country government-to-government interface that is a critical component of the [Voluntary Principles]—for example, to address the challenges of security sector reform, or to provide assistance in managing the predictable influx of people and corresponding demand for infrastructure when a new site opens."
The full text of my remarks can be found here.