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Triodos Bank and human rights

As a values-based bank whose mission to help create a society that promotes people’s quality of life and has human dignity at its core, Triodos Bank has had a strong commitment to human rights since its inception. Our business principles make a specific commitment to respect human rights: ‘We respect people, society and different cultures and support the aims of the United Nation’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights’.

Triodos Bank is working towards reporting in line with, or equivalent to, the UN Guiding Principles Reporting Framework as part of the Dutch Banking Sector Agreement on international responsible business conduct regarding human rights.

How is this reflected in our policies?

In our Business Principles

  • Respect human rights: “We respect people, society and different cultures and support the aims of the United Nation’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights. (p. 1)
  • Our business ethics and corporate governance help to define the parameters within which we can achieve our mission. Ethical business practice is key to that, and it is therefore important to us that we support and commit to the aims of the United Nation’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights and seek to ensure that none of our products and services abuse civil, political, social or economic rights. (p. 2)

View our Business Principles

In our Minimum Standards

  • Triodos Bank uses a Precautionary Principle to minimise the risk of negative impact. The principle is used to set preconditions for companies that operate in industries with increased sustainability risk, such as human rights violations or high levels of greenhouse gas emissions. The Precautionary Principle requires policies, programmes and performance data through which companies demonstrate their awareness and aim to prevent and manage involvement in controversies and negative effects of their business. (p. 2)
  • A main ambition of Triodos Bank’s lending and investment activities is to promote human dignity and a focus on people’s quality of life in general. ( p. 2)
  • Human rights are universal and applicable to all human beings. In the past, upholding respect for human rights was mainly viewed as a government responsibility but nowadays a clear responsibility in this respect is also ascribed to companies. (p. 3)
  • Triodos Bank uses frameworks such as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights to assess and select companies prior to financing or investment. Business relations are expected to respect human rights standards as defined by the organisations referenced above, especially the rights of women, and those of children and other vulnerable groups. (p.4)

View our Minimum Standards