JOINT LETTER: THE LATEST DRAFT EQUATOR PRINCIPLES MUST GUARANTEE HUMAN RIGHTS PROTECTION FOR INDIGENOUS PEOPLES
23 AUGUST 2019
On 23 August 2019, Manushya Foundation joined other 43 civil society organisations in calling the Equator Principles Association (EPA) to review the latest draft of Equator Principles (EP4) to protect Indigenous Peoples rights. Any risk assessment must include consideration of the social, cultural and environmental rights of Indigenous Peoples to effectively understand all of the risks attendant to a project. In the reverse, without analyzing the human rights impacts connected with a project, banks risk financing development that creates social conflict, fuels human rights abuses, and results in financial and reputational losses. This is a losing position for both the financial institutions and the affected Indigenous Peoples. Because the Equator Principles Association (EPA) is setting a global benchmark for social and environmental risk assessment, it is imperative that latest draft of Equator Principles provide clear and strong guidance on implementation of Free, Prior and Informed Consent as to Indigenous Peoples. This Joint Letter urges the Equator Principles Association and all financial institutions to acknowledge their responsibility to respect the Human Rights of Indigenous Peoples.