Many Hurdles, little liability - How can victims of human rights violations enforce their rights against corporations in Germany?

4 November 2014, 12:30-18:30, Humboldt University, Berlin

Organizers: ECCHR, European Coalition for Corporate Justice (ECCJ) and CorA Network for Corporate Accountability

Obstacles, gaps, difficulties: Victims of human rights violations abroad continuously find that they cannot enforce their rights in Germany, even if German corporations are involved in the human rights violations. Two recent scientific studies from the European Coalition for Corporate Justice (ECCJ) and from Amnesty International document why plaintiffs in different countries fail when they take corporations to court. Along with other human rights organizations and lawyers, they recommend specific reforms to improve methods of legal protection. At this conference we intend to discuss possible legal and political solutions.

Calling companies to account: experience gained in transnational human rights lawsuits

3 July 2014, 4:30 PM, Brot für die Welt, Berlin

Organizers: Brot für die Welt, ECCHR, Misereor


International free trade agreements and national laws make it easier for companies to access global markets and raw materials. For want of effective legal or other mechanisms for dealing with grievances, those affected by the negative impacts of these investments are often left completely defenceless. As the law currently stands in Germany and the EU, it is virtually impossible to make companies that are based here liable for their involvement in human rights violations in third countries. Together, Bread for the World, MISEREOR and the ECCHR (European Center for Constitutional and Human Rights e.V.) have analysed the individual obstacles— both actual and legal—that exist in a joint study entitled ‘Calling companies to account: experience gained in transnational human rights lawsuits'.