As the World Bank evaluates its environmental and social safeguards, many civil society organizations from across the globe have criticized existing standards and provided recommendations to ensure human rights are respected in development finance. On April 9th of this year, five human rights advocates testified to this effect at the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission hearing on World Bank Lending and Human Rights. Hear what they had to say (part 1 of 2):
Arvind Ganesan, Director for Business and Human Rights, Human Rights Watch
Working to hold financial institutions accountable and exposing human rights violations linked to development finance, Arvind Ganesan, Director for Business and Human Rights at Human Rights Watch, discussed the important role of US Congress in urging the World Bank to improve its social and environmental policies and the opportunity that Congress has to take a clear position and become a champion for human rights in the context of development finance.
Nadejda Atayeva, President, Association for Human Rights in Central Asia (Uzbekistan)
Nadejda Atayeva, President of the Association for Human Rights in Central Asia, testified that in Uzbekistan a World Bank-funded project that originally aimed to reform the agricultural sector of the economy has contributed to human rights violations. Atayeva explained the need to improve assessments and ensure proper management of projects to ensure they do not use or contribute to forced labor and/or child labor.
Watch part two of these testimonies here.
Originally posted on June 2, 2014.