Director – Labour and Human Rights
CV – Curriculum Vitae
Steve is a co-founder of Ergon and is a specialist in international legal standards. He has over 20 years experience in devising and delivering consultancy, research, advice and training on a range of labour and human rights issues. He is a UK-qualified lawyer.
He has consulted to major international institutions, multinational companies, not for profit organizations and trade unions, including the ILO, World Bank Group, EBRD, the European Commission, London 2012, the ETI, the UK Department for International Development and OSCE. He has worked in country on projects in Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Guatemala, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Peru, Senegal, Philippines, Namibia, Zambia, Russia, Ukraine, Jordan, Albania, Poland, Romania, Bulgaria, Tunisia, Kyrgyzstan and Hong Kong.
As well as working on consulting and research projects, Steve has a particular expertise in facilitating stakeholder dialogue and also devising and devising and managing grievance and dispute resolution mechanisms in line with the UN Guiding Principles, including the procedure for the London 2012 Olympic Games. He has worked on projects across many sectors, including oil and gas, mining, retail, agribusiness, the finance sector and clothing and merchandise supply chains.
Steve also has many years experience delivering a range of learning and development and training programmes, including co-founding the UK’s leading innovative online training company for lawyers CPDCast®. He is a regular conference speaker.
A number of issues arise when considering the application of the principles contained within the Equator Principles and the IFC performance standards on labour to a range of transactional and advisory work of financial institutions. Many are difficult to assess, for example, freedom of association, non-discrimination and wages and the criticality of issues such as child labour and forced labour, so it is paramount that financial institutions better understand the scope of their potential actions and those of their clients in this area. It is also important to understand the terrain of engaged stakeholders, including trade unions and national government. This chapter will consider the following:: standards to be applied; issues that arise, with examples of several; the tensions between the scope of PS2 and national rules; practical steps that banks can take and the limits on banks’ activities and the role of impact assessment studies, social auditing and other forms of assessment reports. The chapter will also place the question firmly in the context of financial sector implementation of the UN Guiding Principles of Business and Human Rights.