Human rights are the basic rights and freedoms to which all people are entitled. The travel and tourism industry (including hospitality) supports 330 million workers worldwide.1 It has a responsibility to ensure that its employees and their human rights are being respected.
The hospitality industry can be at risk of potential human rights issues. Hotel companies may outsource services, such as cleaning, maintenance and security. The industry also operates under a variety of different business models from owner-operators to franchises. This means that companies can have less control over the employment practices of individual properties or supply chains. Additionally, there is the risk of human trafficking for sexual exploitation taking place in hotels.
It is essential that the industry has processes in place to prevent or mitigate human rights risks. Addressing human rights issues is a complex process and the industry needs to work together to support the human rights of their colleagues, the workers in the organisations they do business with, and the communities in which they operate.
We consulted with our members, and stakeholders outside the industry, to identify the areas with the highest potential for human rights risks in the hotel industry. This enabled us to determine where collaboration would be most effective to strengthen the industry’s ability to identify and address human rights risks. We identified the following areas:
This is not representative of all human rights issues in the hospitality industry, but aims to focus on areas where collaboration is essential. Individual hotel companies may also have their own human rights risk mapping and strategy.
Working in collaboration with International Organization for Migration on promoting ethical recruitment, supporting good practice and making international recruitment fair for everyone.
We have free practical training and resources to support hotels to prevent or mitigate human rights risks.
Discover how to use our resources for support with awareness, implementation and best practice examples.
We work with hospitality companies, governmental institutions, non-profits and other industries to mitigate human rights risks across the global hospitality sector.