Political deal on Due Diligence sets a new era in the fight against corporate impunity

EFFAT, the European Federation of Food, Agriculture, and Tourism Trade Unions, applauds the political agreement on the Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence Directive (CSDDD). This crucial law can address labour abuses in supply chains and franchise networks. Nevertheless, the exclusion of financial services from due diligence obligations is concerning.

EU co-legislators’ recent agreement on the CSDD Directive is a significant milestone for human rights and environmental protection in supply and subcontracting chains, and franchise systems. While the final text is pending and details are still being finalized in technical meetings, EFFAT celebrates important victories.

The text sets out clear obligations for companies to address actual and potential human rights and environmental risks linked to their operations, subsidiaries and business relationships. Victims of corporate-related human rights abuses will now be able to hold companies liable before EU courts if they are harmed through the companies’ operations or business relationships.

EU and third-country-based multinationals operating in the EU through franchise systems are also part of the scope of the Directive. This is a major victory for EFFAT, its affiliates, and all workers in the hospitality sector. Union busting practices pursued by fast food and hotel multinationals won’t go unpunished and victims of violence and harassment at work will finally be able to claim justice and hold parent companies accountable.

EFFAT General Secretary Kristjan Bragason commenting on the political deal said:

“This deal is a significant victory for vulnerable workers in agro-food supply chains and fast-food stores in Europe and globally. The text provides essential tools to pursue corporate justice and to prevent human rights abuses in our sectors. However, EFFAT deems the exclusion of the financial sector as a missed opportunity’.”

EFFAT will now take the time to assess the details of the final text hoping for a quick adoption by co-legislators in 2024.