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THE FOUNDATION FOR CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY IS A NETWORK OF INTERNATIONAL CORPORATIONS ACTIVELY WORKING IN POLAND TO AFFECT POSITIVE SOCIAL CHANGE THROUGH CORPORATE PHILANTHROPY. WE FEED, EDUCATE AND EMPOWER POOR CHILDREN IN POLAND. COLLECTIVELY, WE HAVE FED OVER 6 MILLION HOT MEALS TO SOME OF POLAND’S MOST NEEDY CHILDREN. OUR MISSION IS TO LEAD THE BUSINESS COMMUNITY IN RAISING THE LEVEL AND QUALITY OF CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY.

Newsletter March 2, 2015 Vol. 12, No. 8

"You can't stop the waves, but you can learn to surf."
-- Jon Kabat-Zinn

To: Mr. WILLIAM CHASEY AND FCSR MEMBERS

Every child in the Promiseland is dreaming of going to Warsaw and to see all the beautiful things there, but many children probably will never go to our country’s capital. We love our parents and we understand that many of them can not afford sending us for a trip anywhere. Luckily, there are people who want to make us happy.

“Dinner Dance” is a wonderful idea that will make our lives better. Staying in a five-star hotel, going to the Złote Tarasy shopping mall or having lunch at KFC was something unbelievable for us! It was wonderful that we could entertain you during the Dinner Dance and we will never forget that. Thank you for inviting us to Warsaw. It was an unforgettable experience!

There is no time more appropriate than this to say Thank You and to wish you all the best!

PromiseKids from Brzeżno School

94 COMPANIES & 41 GOVERNMENTS PUBLICILY DISCLOSE ACTIONS ON BUSINESS & HUMAN RIGHTS

New interactive platforms launched on February 25 reveal how companies and governments are addressing human rights impacts of business, finding that while there are many inspirational examples of action, much more needs to be done.

Business & Human Rights Resource Center approached over 100 governments and 180 companies with specific questions on their business and human rights policies and actions. 52% of companies and 40% of governments responded. From the results, it is clear that the endorsement of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights has catalyzed action, but there remains a lack of understanding and cohesive action between government and business.

Phil Bloomer, Business & Human Rights Resource Center Executive Director said: "Our new action platforms will drive essential government and corporate action on business and human rights by increasing transparency and sharing good practice. This is the first free public website where anyone can compare action on business and human rights by 94 companies and 41 governments."

Companies from all regions responded, including Coca-Cola, CNOOC (China National Offshore Oil Corporation), and Telefónica. Many respondents noted that complex supply chains and weak government enforcement present challenges to their respect for human rights. Among the most common actions companies said they are taking were policy commitments, external reporting, and engaging suppliers. 34 of the world’s largest 50 companies now have a publicly-available policy statement on human rights.

There was particularly poor engagement from the retail and apparel sector where only 25% responded, mostly apparel companies. State-owned extractive companies also failed to respond in many cases. The highest response rate was from the food & beverage sector (73%).

The European Union led the way on government engagement with 71% of EU member states responding. Many governments already active on business and human rights issues responded (Brazil, Norway, Germany, USA) and it was promising to see responses from countries in the initial phases of policy development in this area (Angola, Bahrain, Israel, Japan, Myanmar).

There is momentum among governments to develop National Action Plans on business and human rights. Although there are currently only four governments with such plans (Denmark, Finland, Netherlands, UK), more than a dozen have indicated that they are developing or considering developing a National Action Plan. Most governments cited legislative actions in steps they have taken. Relatively few governments recognised extraterritorial jurisdiction as a means to protect human rights from business impacts. Government respondents most commonly cited lack of awareness and challenges in coordination across ministries.

Several governments with large economic footprints failed to engage with this process (Canada, China, India, Russia). Canadian and Russian companies also failed to respond, and there was low response from Indian (29%) and Chinese (26%) companies. This trend is disappointing as transparency is key to improve both government and company actions.

Both government and company respondents reported taking positive, substantive actions. These include mandatory reporting requirements on various human rights issues in Denmark, France, UK, USA and elsewhere, and efforts by some companies to conduct human rights impact assessments in the countries where they operate, and establish clear processes for receiving complaints.

Joint action needed

While companies noted significant challenges resulting from governance gaps, several governments cited opposition by business interests as an obstacle. This mismatch highlights that governments and companies are at best not cooperating, and at worst avoiding responsibility by pointing the finger at each other.

Alongside each company and government profile are related stories from civil society and the media. The platforms seek to strengthen accountability as well as transparency. They feature practical steps that can be shared; highlight companies and governments that are not yet engaging; and provide information that human rights defenders can use to hold companies to account.

Annabel Short, Program Director and project manager of the Company Action Platform said: "Any company looking for long-term success in the face of major social and environmental challenges needs to take human rights seriously. We encourage companies in all regions to take action and share their progress publicly."

Eniko Horvath, project manager of the Government Action Platform said: "With several National Action Plan processes underway, governments should seize the opportunity to share experiences and ensure their plans are not only strong on paper, but deliver effective protection and remedies worldwide."

Media Contact:

Annabel Short, Programme Director, project manager for Company Action Platform, short@business-humanrights.org, +1 212 564 9160

"Ida" WINS OSCAR

Paweł Pawlikowski's "Ida" won the Oscar for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 87th Academy Awards ceremony. The film has beaten Russian anti-Putin drama "Leviathan", among others, and became the first Polish movie to win the award. "We made a film about the need for silence, withdrawal from the world and contemplation, and here we are at this center of noise and attention",Pawlikowski said during his acceptance speech. He was later played off stage. However, the Polish filmmaker ignored the wrap-up music and continued his speech. He thanked his crew and his late wife. "I would like to dedicate [this Oscar] to my late wife and my parents who are not among the living who are totally inside this film and they have a lot to do with it," Pawlikowski continued, ignoring the Orchestra and talking over music. The US online magazine Slate has jokingly commented on the Polish filmmaker's speech: "Paweł Pawlikowski, hero of our times, went up against the music that dispensed hundreds of directors, actors, and producers before him, and won." Set in the 1960s, "Ida" tells the story of a novice nun, who along with her aunt, a former prosecutor associated with the Stalinist regime, sets out on a journey to find the resting place of her parents killed during World War II. The movie won numerous prestigious Polish and European awards. This is the 12th Academy Award won by a Pole.

UNEMPLOYMENT AT SINGLE-DIGIT FIGURE POSSIBLE

The Minister of Labor and Social Policy, Władysław Kosiniak-Kamysz, said on Wednesday that the unemployment rate towards the end of the year might drop to a single-digit figure. "It seems that when it comes to the labor market, the worst is behind us and in the following months unemployment should fall," the minister announced. He expects that in 2015, unemployment will drop by some 2 percentage points. "If the pace of GDP growth is maintained and we use wisely the PLN 5.5 billion earmarked for the active forms of combating unemployment and for the labor cost subsidies (...) there is a chance that this year's unemployment rate decline will be comparable to last year's," Kosiniak-Kamysz said.

20,000 NEW WORKPLACES IN THE OUTSOURCING SECTOR

Deputy director at the Polish Information and Foreign Investment Agency, Monika Piątkowska has said that employment in the outsourcing sector will increase by some 20,000 workplaces to 170,000 in 2015. "We have more than 600 outsourcing centers, in which we employ around 150,000 people, mainly in major, academic cities such as Krakow, Warsaw and Wrocław. Recently, the sector has also been expanding in the mid-sized cities. "According to our estimates, at the end of 2015, there will be as many as 170,000 people working in outsourcing centers," Piątkowska said. The agency has also informed that currently it is working on 163 investment projects worth PLN2.97 billion, which is expected to create nearly 30,000 workplaces.

FARMERS PROTEST CONTINUES

Around 50 farmers have put up tents in front of the Prime Minister's Office to demand subsidies for milk and pork production and compensation for damages caused by wild boars.

The farmers, who gathered in the so-called "green town," will stay there until at least March 10, according to Jerzy Chrścikowski, the leader of the NSZZ Solidarity of Individual Farmers union. Chrścikowski also announced a nationwide farmers' strike. Meanwhile, Sławomir Izdebski, head of the agricultural wing of the National Alliance of Trade Unions (OPZZ), said that the farmers' protest will "shake Poland."

PATENT APPLICATIONS ROSE BY 22%

In 2014, Polish firms applied for 701 patents, a growth of 22 percent year-on-year, the European Patent Office reported. Companies from the technology, medical and IT sectors submitted the largest number of applications. In total, the office recorded 274,000 applications last year, nearly 1/3 of them came from small and medium enterprises.

POLISH GDP GROWTH HIGHEST IN EU

Poland's GDP will grow the fastest among the EU states, expanding by 3.3 percent thisyear, according to estimates by Bloomberg. The Polish economy ranked 17th out of 57 included in the ranking. The global economy will grow by 3.2 percent in 2015 and by 3.7 percent in 2016. China will record the fastest GDP growth, by 7 percent. The Philippines (a growth rate of 6.3 percent) and Kenya (a growth rate of 6 percent) ranked 2nd and 3rd respectively. When it comes to the euro zone, its GDP will increase by 1.2 percent this year, according to Bloomberg.

HALF OF POLES PLEASED WITH INCOME

As much as 55 percent of Poles are satisfied with their income, 7 percent of respondents can afford anything they want, according to a survey conducted by TNS

Polska Financial standing of 4 percent of Poles is so bad that they cannot satisfy their basic needs. When it comes to respondents' expectations, 60 percent of them think their income will not change this year and their spendings will not rise. Only 8 percent of surveyed Poles predict their financial situation to worsen. The survey was conducted in January; 1000 people participated.

GROWING PESSIMISM AMONG POLES

Around 50 farmers have put up tents in front of the Prime Minister's Office to demand subsidies for milk and pork production and compensation for damages caused by wild boars.

The farmers, who gathered in the so-called "green town," will stay there until at least March 10, according to Jerzy Chrścikowski, the leader of the NSZZ Solidarity of Individual Farmers union. Chrścikowski also announced a nationwide farmers' strike. Meanwhile, Sławomir Izdebski, head of the agricultural wing of the National Alliance of Trade Unions (OPZZ), said that the farmers' protest will "shake Poland."

HERE IS HOW YOU CAN HELP OUR PROMISEKIDS

Our Dollar a Day program may be just what you have been looking for and the PayPal method of delivering your money makes it so easy. We pay just about $1.00 to feed one hungry Polish child a hot-meal per school day, $20.00 per month, $200.00 per year. Click PayPal below to contribute.

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