- All 32 companies publicly commit to respecting human rights.
- However, the level of commitment varies: a third has reached a very sophisticated level of commitment (standalone human rights policy/active participation in multi-stakeholder initiatives, etc.); a third has a clear and well-defined commitment but may not be as proactive in showcasing it; and the last group has managed to inscribe a commitment to human rights within an internal policy but is still at a very early stage.
Good practice - mining companies
Newmont has formalised its approach to human rights with an explicit commitment in its Sustainability and Stakeholder Engagement Policy. This is underpinned by Newmont’s Human Rights Standard, which is designed to help identify minimum requirements to identify, prevent, mitigate, track and report on how Newmont addresses human rights risks. For example, at each stage of their project life cycle, Newmont works to gain consent from indigenous communities, using the ICMM Position Statement to define consent, and in 2016 all sites completed implementation of auditable processes for capturing community commitments.
What should investors look out for?
- Vague wording – no explicit reference to existing international human rights conventions or instruments.
- Commitment does not explicitly extend to business partners, contractors or suppliers.
- Not enough information about how the company intends to demonstrate its commitment.
- Poor internal and/or external communication of the commitment.
- No disclosure around local stakeholder engagement.
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Digging deeper: human rights and the extractives sector
Human rights and the extractives industry
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Engagement against objectives: human rights commitments