Tools and Guidance

The Atlas is just one of many resources available to help companies evaluate their impact on children’s rights. UNICEF has developed a series of tools and guidance documents to help businesses integrate children’s rights into due diligence procedures, and Global Child Forum has developed knowledge products. These are introduced below.

  • Operationalise

    UNICEF’s Children are Everyone’s Business - Workbook 2.0 is a great resource to get you started. It outlines a framework for companies to better operationalise their respect and support for children’s rights drawing on tools specific to particular due diligence steps.

    Use the workbook to:

    • Learn about and better understand children’s rights issues relevant to each Children’s Rights and Business Principle
    • Determine the contexts where children’s rights risks or opportunities may be more prevalent
    • Assess policies and processes that are critical to addressing children’s rights impacts, and identify actions for improvement
    • Take actions to integrate children’s rights based on impact assessment findings
    • Report on children’s rights performance
  • Stakeholder engagement

    UNICEF’s Engaging Stakeholders on Children's Rights offers guidance to companies on engaging stakeholders on children’s rights as part of enhancing their standards and practices at both the corporate and site levels. Engaging stakeholders on children’s rights can inform company policies, human rights due diligence, and grievance and remediation mechanisms.

    Use this tool to:

    • Determine the relevance and appropriate level of engagement with stakeholders on children's rights
    • Identify and prioritise children’s rights stakeholders, including children
    • Plan consultations with children, and understand how to engage directly and ethically, with appropriate safeguards for children in place
  • Policy commitment

    UNICEF’s Children’s Rights in Policies and Codes of Conduct recommends ways for businesses to incorporate children’s rights into their policies and codes of conduct. It reaches beyond the traditional focus areas of child labour and philanthropy, and outlines children’s rights elements that are relevant to all companies. At the same time, it includes elements that companies can adopt and integrate as appropriate, based on their biggest areas of risk and opportunity.

    Use this tool to:

    • Integrate children’s rights elements into existing corporate commitments and policies
    • Get started on developing a standalone children’s rights or child protection policy or code of conduct
    • Establish expectations for personnel, suppliers, customers and other business partners
    • Find suggestions for policy recommendations based on a company’s children’s rights risks or opportunities
  • Assess impacts

    UNICEF’s Children’s Rights in Impact Assessments provides guidance for companies on integrating children’s rights considerations into ongoing assessments of overall human rights impacts. Specifically, it offers a number of criteria that companies can use both to review critical areas of potential or actual impact on children’s rights and identify actions for improvement.

    Use this tool to:

    • Examine the potential or actual impact on children’s rights and identify priority improvement areas.
    • Integrate children’s rights criteria into wider social, environmental and human rights impact assessments
    • Carry out a stand-alone children’s rights impact assessment
    • Find guidance on specific actions a company can take to address identified risks or opportunities
  • Report

    UNICEF’s Children’s Rights in Sustainability Reporting guides companies on integrating children’s rights considerations into sustainability reporting, going beyond child labour and community investments. It provides guidance to companies on communicating their actions to respect and support children’s rights through their policies, processes and operations. It also suggests elements of the Global Reporting Initiative [HYPERLINK] (GRI) framework that can be used as the basis for reporting on children’s rights.

    Use this tool to:

    • Understand how to report on children’s rights
    • Identify elements of the GRI framework that can be used for reporting on children’s rights
    • Identify examples of company information to report

    The Global Child Forum Corporate Benchmark Indicators help companies align their external reporting to the Children’s Rights and Business Principles. The Corporate Benchmark Indicators provides guidance on how reporting on children’s rights can be integrated into the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) G4 Standard Disclosure, a leading sustainability reporting standard. The Corporate Benchmark Indicators provide practical information on where and in which context a company can publish information on their commitment, policy or action taken.

    Use this tool to:

    • Align your reporting to the Children’s Rights and Business Principles
    • Integrate children’s rights into external reporting against the GRI framework
    • Leading company examples
  • Remediate

    UNICEF’s Operational-level grievance mechanisms fit for children discussion paper explores how businesses can help children to raise grievances effectively when their rights have been infringed and how companies can establish or participate in grievance mechanisms to provide recourse and resolution satisfactory to all. This approach is not only in line with children’s rights, but also promises to benefit the companies that adopt it. The paper complements UNICEF’s existing tools for companies, which provide practical guidance on incorporating children’s rights in policies, impact assessments, reporting and stakeholder engagement. To date, children’s right to a remedy has received little attention in the context of business-related human rights violations and abuses. With this in mind, the paper aims to start a dialogue about children’s rights and operational grievance mechanisms.