Spain Calls for Mandatory Human Rights Due Diligence


A woman harvesting strawberries

Photo by Euroactiv


In February 2022, the Spanish government published their Legislative Plan for 2022, including a national law requiring Spanish transnational companies to undertake human rights and environmental due diligence in their supply chain (Plan Normativo 2022 p.114). Supported by Plataforma por Empresas Responsables – a group of Spanish civil society organizations – the law is based on the draft EU Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence Law and proposes:


  • Due diligence throughout the entire value chain, including the adoption and development of due diligence plans that prevent, eliminate, mitigate and/or remedy human + environmental rights violations

  • Include unions and non-profit entities in taking collective action on behalf of victims and in the development, implementation + supervision of due diligence processes

  • A sanctions system against companies that fail to comply with their obligations

  • Guaranteed access to justice for all people or communities that have been victims of human and environmental rights violations derived from the activities carried out by companies in their supply chains


This new legislation follows increasing pressure from civil society in Spain to promote human rights in business, including for the approval in December 2021 of a National Action Plan against Forced Labour and ratification of two key International Labor Organization (ILO) standards: the Violence and Harassment Convention (C190) and the Home Work Convention (C177).


Following national acts supporting human rights due diligence in 2021 in Netherlands, Norway, Germany, the US and Canada and in 2022 in Japan, national governments are increasingly shifting the framework on human rights from volunteerism to business asset. While progressive mechanisms are being adopted to ensure rights are respected, piecemeal mechanisms have been inadequate to reduce human rights violations at scale. Regulations now establish a framework of obligations, infringements and sanctions for companies if they violate human rights in third countries, ensuring that all victims have proper access to justice.


Businesses can proactively remediate human rights risks by developing holistic ecosystem to promote mandatory supply chain due diligence. To find out more about how Labor Solutions can leverage our decade of human rights risk assessment experience to support your business, get in touch here or at info@laborsolutions.tech.