In partnership with the Fund for Peace, Goldcorp will launch step-by-step human rights training for 11,000 employees and contractors worldwide.
As part of our commitment to respect the rights of employees and citizens in every country where we operate and our aim to exemplify best industry practices across our business processes, Goldcorp is launching an extensive human rights training program in eight nations. In the past year Goldcorp has worked with the Fund for Peace (FFP), a nonpartisan, non-profit organization founded in 1957, based in Washington, DC, and recognized as a leader in mitigating company-community conflict through education and engagement. “We sought out FFP based on their expertise at making human rights meaningful for business and turning regulatory phrases into motivational, individual action. They know how to bring human rights home to people,” says Goldcorp’s Dina Aloi, Vice President, Corporate Social Responsibility.
The core philosophy of FFP is shared by Goldcorp: companies have a duty to respect human rights and avoid contributing to abuse of civil liberties. In over 50 countries FFP partners with government, academia, military, media, civilians and the private sector to establish the Voluntary Principles for Security and Human Rights (VPs), a set of guidelines for operating in conflict zones that require a careful balance of work site security and protection of individual rights and freedoms.
“We bring high-level principles to ground level, simplifying the complexity of human rights, explaining the importance and making it relevant to employees in the context of day-to-day mine operations and personal relations,” says J.J. Messner, FFP’s Senior Associate. “We construct situations to show practical applications and instill mindsets of how to act, react and conform to Goldcorp’s benchmark standards and accountability.” Some of the comprehensive steps to implement the program involve:
- Identifying local/regional concerns and challenges
- Understanding jurisdictional legislation and legal frameworks
- Adapting policies and processes to the country’s context
- Encouraging host government participation
- Raising awareness and championing human rights
- Initiating dialogue in communities
- Developing approaches to mitigate conflict and resolve issues
- Implementing procedures and protocol at project sites
- Training private and public security providers
- Establishing grievance mechanisms and incident reporting
Goldcorp will also track and measure ongoing progress and performance with FFP tools and impact indicators, says Aloi. “Very few organizations have pursued this approach, so this is groundbreaking work that we look forward to sharing with the rest of the industry and the international development community.”
The role of corporations in respecting human rights is one that sparks global debate, including questions around how companies can effectively and proactively respect human rights, how human rights risks can/should be assessed, how companies can best implement a human rights management strategy, and how meaningful change in human rights culture can be measured and monitored over time. We recognize that our Human Rights policy and training program are just the initial steps in creating a strong culture of respect for human rights everywhere we operate.
We want to hear from you on what else can be done. What has worked well and what has not? How involved should government and NGOs be in a company’s corporate human rights program/strategy? Let us know what you think.