David Risstrom - Greens Melbourne City Councillor 1999-2004
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ACHIEVEMENT: Melbourne has become the first city on the world to adopt the United Nations Global Compact, and promotes its aims.

TARGET DATE: December 2001. PROGRESS: Achieved.

DESCRIPTION: The United Nations Global Compact is a joint initiative between world businesses and the United Nations that promotes human rights, rights at work and environment and development principles.

The United Nations Global Compact has nine principles, which its signatories agree to uphold. These are:
* To support and respect the protection of international human rights within their sphere of influence;
* To ensure their corporations are not complicit in human rights abuses;
* To support freedom of association and recognise the right to collectively bargain;
* To eliminate all forms of forced and compulsory labour;
* To effectively abolish child labour;
* To eliminate discrimination in respect of employment and occupation;
* To support a precautionary approach to environmental challenges;
* To undertake initiatives to promote greater environmental responsibility; and,
* To encourage the development and diffusion of environmentally friendly

The principles are based on the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the International Labour Organisation’s Fundamental Principles on Rights at Work and the Rio Principles on environment and development.

Melbourne became the first city in the world to adopt the Global Compact, when it joined in August 2001. The City of Melbourne has set a goal to have most companies operating in Melbourne to engage with the Global Compact by 2010. Obligations to promote and encourage local businesses to join are continuing.

At the instigation of the Committee for Melbourne (a network of business and community groups) and other stakeholders, the City of Melbourne was approached as a possible candidate for joining the Global Compact. After an exchange of letters with UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan, the United Nations confirmed that cities could become members. By joining the Global Compact in August 2001, the City of Melbourne has committed to applying the principles to its own operations, and has set a goal to have most companies operating in Melbourne to engage with the Global Compact by 2010.

As Chair of the Environment, Community and Cultural Development Committee, I moved in August 2001 that Melbourne City Council become the first city in the world to joint the Global Compact. As part of our commitment to the Global Charter, we have maintained an active involvement in trying to increase the number of businesses and other organisations joining the Compact. When time allows, I will transfer more details to this site on the work done by the City of Melbourne in this area.

FURTHER INFORMATION: The official website of the United Nations Global Compact can be found at: www.unglobalcompact.org

For further information on United Nations Global Compact contact David Teller (dteller@melbourne.org.au) or Janine Kirk (jkirk@melbourne.org.au) at the Committee for Melbourne.

The Committee for Melbourne, a network of business and community groups, along with Melbourne City Council and other stakeholders, was behind the pioneering move for the City to sign the Global Compact. The Committee for Melbourne's website is: www.melbourne.org.au.


Cool Green Tip Of The Week -

23 April 2017: Only those who decline to scramble up the career ladder are interesting as human beings. Nothing is more boring than a man with a career: Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, The Gulag Archipelago 1918 -1956.

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