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New Corporate Social Responsibility website encouraging responsible business practices

Minister Bruton – CSR can help to improve competitiveness and support the wider community

The Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Richard Bruton T.D., today launched a new website, www.csrhub.ie, which provides advice and support for businesses and other organisations who are interested in learning more about Corporate Social Responsibility and implementing sustainable and responsible business practices.

The website is an initiative of the CSR Stakeholder Forum which Minister Bruton established last year to help progress the Government’s National Plan on CSR, “Good for Business, Good for the Community”. The launch was attended by the Chair of the CSR Stakeholder Forum, Brendan Jennings, Managing Partner of Deloitte, and other representatives from the Forum.

Speaking at the launch of www.csrhub.ie, Minister Bruton said:

“Corporate Social Responsibility has evolved significantly over the last decade and has become a key element in the competitiveness agenda. Increasingly, the manner in which companies engage with their customers, their suppliers, their workers, their physical environment and their local communities is a distinguishing feature of successful companies in Ireland and elsewhere.

“When making choices, consumers and prospective employees are more aware than ever of the record, reputation and trustworthiness of companies. For companies seeking to retain customers or attract key workers, CSR is no longer an optional “add-on”, but is becoming a necessary part of their mainstream operations. I would encourage everyone to check out www.csrhub.ie to become more informed about Corporate Social Responsibility.

“I want to thank Brendan Jennings and the members of the CSR Stakeholder Forum for their commitment to highlighting the important role that CSR can play in supporting companies and the communities in which they operate.

“The launch of the CSRHub is a key output of the Forum and will help to increase awareness of CSR and provide a resource to assist companies, regardless of their size, who want to learn more about CSR policies and practices.”

Brendan Jennings, Chair of the CSR Stakeholder Forum, said:

“One of the key objectives of the National Plan on CSR is to increase awareness of Corporate Social Responsibility and its benefits to business and wider society. To help achieve this goal, the CSR Stakeholder Forum has set up the CSRHub website.  It is a communications tool which explains the benefits of engaging in CSR and acts as a signpost to all of the key CSR resources available in Ireland and at international level. The CSRHub will be of interest to companies, both large and small, who have an interest in introducing or implementing CSR practices.

“Small and medium sized enterprises make up the largest share of Ireland’s enterprise base and many of them are actively implementing CSR practices and making a difference to their local communities. I hope that the CSRHub will prove to be a useful support to them, and to others who want to learn more about getting involved in CSR.”

ENDS

For further information:

Press Office, Dept. Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Phone: (01) 631 2200 or press.office@djei.ie 

NOTE FOR EDITORS

What is CSR?

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is a concept whereby enterprises integrate social and environmental concerns into their mainstream business operations on a voluntary basis. CSR goes beyond compliance with legislative requirements. It is a process which maximises the creation of shared value through collaboration with all stakeholders and ensures that the interests of enterprises and interests of wider society are mutually supportive.

National Plan on CSR

As part of the Government’s Action Plan for Jobs, the Government published its first National Plan on Corporate Social Responsibility - Good for Business, Good for the Community - in April 2014. The Plan covers the period 2014-2016.

The National Plan sets out the general framework within which CSR operates in Ireland and outlines the key principles and objectives which underpin the Government’s approach to CSR. The Plan is based on five Pillars: Workplace, Environment, Marketplace, Community and the Public Sector. The National Plan explains how CSR can contribute positively to a company’s business and highlights practical supports which are available to organisations that want to embark on, or make improvements in, this area. The Plan not only recognises the importance of CSR for enterprise, but also for the wider communities in which they operate.

The key objectives set out in the Plan are to:

  • Increase awareness of CSR, its value to businesses and to society as a whole.
  • Encourage enterprises to develop and implement CSR policies and practices and mainstream them into their core business operations.
  • Encourage more small and medium-sized enterprises to build CSR capacity.
  • Increase transparency and reporting of CSR activity by enterprises operating in Ireland.
  • Anchor CSR principles in public bodies in the context of their own operations.

 

The National Plan on Corporate Social Responsibility supports the Government’s objective of making Ireland the best small country in which to do business by encouraging responsible and sustainable business practices.

Ireland’s National Plan on Corporate Social Responsibility, Good for Business, Good for the Community, is available at:

Good for Business, Good for the Community

CSR Stakeholder Forum

A key deliverable in the National Plan on CSR was the establishment of a CSR Stakeholder Forum. The role of the Forum is to drive the objectives of the National Plan, to inform the further development of the CSR policy framework in Ireland, and ensure that the Plan remains relevant to evolving international best practice and thinking.

The Forum comprises senior representatives of the business sector, key Government Departments and agencies and the wider community. It is chaired by Mr Brendan Jennings, Managing Partner, Deloitte. Secretariat support is provided by the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation. Membership of the Forum is on a voluntary basis. 

CSR Hub Website

One of the key outputs of the CSR Stakeholder Forum has been the development of the CSR Hub website, www.csrhub.ie.

The launch of the website will make a significant contribution to progressing a number of the objectives in the National Plan on CSR, most notably by increasing awareness of CSR and encouraging enterprises, including SMEs, to develop and implement CSR policies and practices.

It will provide a central repository of information on CSR, bringing together the national and EU Policy framework on CSR and acting as a signpost to all of the key CSR resources in Ireland and at international level.

As well as providing the policy frameworks, guidance tools and resources on CSR, it also highlights case studies of best CSR practice.

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