The Responsible Business Initiative: protecting human rights and the environment

About the initiative

Swiss based companies have made and continue to make headlines for human rights abuses and environmental damages committed through their global activities.

Abusive child labour in cocoa production, catastrophic working conditions in textile factories, environmental damages caused by the extractive mining industry… Such unethical business practices still enjoy impunity to this day.
This is why, on April 21st 2015, a broad coalition of Swiss civil society organizations working in human rights, development and environmental protection launched the Responsible Business Initiative. The initiative aims at introducing a biding framework to protect human rights and the environment abroad. By setting common benchmarks for all companies based in Switzerland, the initiative will also play a key role in providing fairer competitiveness.


The Responsible Business Initiative enjoys the support of a broad coalition comprising of 80 organisations working in development aid, women and human rights and environmental protection, as well as churches, unions and shareholders’ associations.