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Case study: How Goldcorp respects and promotes human rights

Headquartered in Vancouver, British Columbia, Goldcorp is a leading gold producer focused on responsible mining practices with safe, low-cost production from a high-quality portfolio of mines throughout the Americas. As a member of the International Council on Mining & Metals (ICMM) and the United Nations Global Compact (UNGC), Goldcorp is committed to respecting human rights   Tweet This! as set forth in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights and under international humanitarian law.

This case study is based on the 2017 Sustainability Report by Goldcorp published on the Global Reporting Initiative Sustainability Disclosure Database that can be found at this link. Through all case studies we aim to demonstrate what CSR/ ESG/ sustainability reporting done responsibly means. Essentially, it means: a) identifying a company’s most important impacts on the environment, economy and society, and b) measuring, managing and changing.

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Operating in a way that respects the human rights of employees and communities while also respecting the rights, interests, perspectives and traditions of Indigenous Peoples, is a top priority for Goldcorp. In order to respect and promote human rights Goldcorp took action to:

  • implement a Human Rights Policy
  • apply due diligence processes
  • provide human rights training

What are the material issues the company has identified?

In its 2017 Sustainability Report Goldcorp identified a range of material issues, such as governance and accountability, environmental compliance, workforce safety and health, water management, business ethics and compliance. Among these, respecting and promoting human rights stands out as a key material issue for Goldcorp.

Stakeholder engagement in accordance with the GRI Standards              

The Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) defines the Principle of Stakeholder Inclusiveness when identifying material issues (or a company’s most important impacts) as follows:

“The reporting organization shall identify its stakeholders, and explain how it has responded to their reasonable expectations and interests.”

Stakeholders must be consulted in the process of identifying a company’s most important impacts and their reasonable expectations and interests must be taken into account. This is an important cornerstone for CSR / sustainability reporting done responsibly.

Key stakeholder groups Goldcorp engages with:

Stakeholder Group                Method of engagement
Civil society and nongovernmental organisations (NGOs)

 

·      Face-to-face engagements

·      Public meetings

·      Teleconferences

·      Social media

Government

 

·      Face-to-face meetings

·      Industry conferences

·      Regulatory engagement processes

·      Public meetings, teleconferences

·      Newsletters

Communities

 

·      Site tours

·      Public engagements (open house events)

·      Face-to-face meetings

·      Community Response mechanisms

·      Newspapers, radio, newsletters

·      Above Ground blog and social media

·      Goldcorp website

·      Engagement surveys

Indigenous Peoples

 

 

·      Face-to-face engagements

·      Agreement implementation committees

·      Community roundtables

Media ·      Investor calls

·      News releases

·      Goldcorp website

·      Above Ground blog and social media

Academia ·      Conferences

·      Telephone calls

·      Training programmes

·      Research programmes

Public/private institutions ·      Community partnership discussions

·      Community Response mechanisms

Business partners

 

·      Interactions with Goldcorp’s procurement teams

·       Industry roundtables

·      Tendering/ Request For Proposal (RFP) process

Investors ·      Quarterly conference calls

·      Investor Days

·      Socially Responsible Investor (SRI) calls

·      Conferences

·      Annual reports and financial circulars

·      Site tours

·      Non-deal road shows

Employees

 

·      Internal intranet

·      Newsletters

·      Town Hall meetings

·      Above Ground blog and social media

·      Lunch and Learns

·      Crew talks/ Huddles

·      Email and print mail

·      Performance reviews

·      Conferences

Land and resource users

 

·      Face-to-face interactions

·      Email

·      Phone calls

·      Public meetings

·      Newsletters

·      Letters

How stakeholder engagement was made to identify material issues

To identify and prioritise material topics Goldcorp carried out interviews with both internal and external stakeholders, asking them to rank topics from a 0 (no significance/not important) to 4 (critical significance/critical importance) scale.

What actions were taken by Goldcorp to respect and promote human rights?

In its 2017 Sustainability Report Goldcorp reports that it took the following actions for respecting and promoting human rights:

  • Implementing a Human Rights Policy
  • Goldcorp’s Human Rights Policy, first released in 2011 and subsequently updated in 2015, reflects the changing social context in which Goldcorp Goldcorp’s revised policy defines its daily practices and commitments on human rights. New additions to this policy include clauses on community consultation, grievance mechanisms, commitment to the Conflict-Free Gold Standard, commitment to respect the rights, interests, perspectives and traditions of Indigenous Peoples, and resettlement planning and potential measures in the event of non-compliance.
  • Applying due diligence processes
  • Goldcorp assesses potential human rights issues, takes measures to avoid infringing on them and seeks constructive dialogue and partnerships with stakeholders impacted by its activities. Some examples of Goldcorp’s due diligence processes and mechanisms include:
    • Human rights training and capacity-building
    • Stakeholder engagement and consultation
    • Internal and external audits
    • Investigation and remediation of incidents and human rights impacts
    • Human rights impact assessments
    • External reporting, communication and transparency
    • Site-based community response systems and ethics hotline
    • Policies and standards
  • All Board members, officers, contractors or any third party conducting work or acting on Goldcorp’s behalf are expected to behave in a manner that respects human rights and avoids infringing upon them. Goldcorp takes appropriate measures to make sure that everyone working at Goldcorp, or on its behalf, respects its Code of Conduct, Human Rights Policy and Occupational Health and Safety Policy and also abides by Goldcorp’s safety protocols, rules and standards. For employees, non-compliance with these policies may be grounds for disciplinary action up to and including termination of employment. For contractors and third parties, non-compliance may be grounds for contract termination.
  • Providing human rights training
  • In 2017, Goldcorp’s CSR and Ethics and Compliance teams collaborated on the creation of a new online course combining Human Rights and Code of Conduct training. This new course streamlined Goldcorp’s internal training to facilitate learning and minimise training fatigue. The two departments worked together to create a course that was more interactive and scenarios based, to increase effectiveness. The updated online training course was launched in Q4 2017, with approximately 30% of Goldcorp’s workforce completing the training as of December 31, 2017. The online course has the objectives of maintaining awareness about Goldcorp’s Human Rights and Code of Conduct Policies, recognising human rights risks and violations and knowing the mechanisms in place to report them. The course was rolled out to Goldcorp’s workforce with daily access to computers and, to increase the reach of its training and awareness programme, Goldcorp adapted the online material to be delivered to employees and key contractors who did not have regular access to computers. In addition, in 2017, Goldcorp delivered Respecting Rights: Championing Human Rights at Goldcorp, an in-depth participatory workshop for employees whose work offers distinct opportunities to understand Goldcorp’s human rights commitments and apply its Human Rights Policy at two sites (Cerro Negro and Marlin). To improve understanding of human rights and increase knowledge of its Human Rights Policy among the management team and key employees overseeing departments that may have exposure to human rights risks, Goldcorp will continue to promote its successful implementation across all its operations. After completing the workshop, participants were able to:
    • Explain what human rights mean in the context of Goldcorp’s operations
    • Identify existing human rights risks and potential human rights risks related to Goldcorp’s operations
    • Identify prevention, mitigation and remediation measures for high-risk human rights issues
    • Explain reporting mechanisms and course of actions to take when becoming aware of an existing or potential human rights risk or violation.

Which GRI Standards and corresponding Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) have been addressed?

The GRI Standard addressed in this case is: Disclosure 412-2 Employee training on human rights policies or procedures

Disclosure 412-2 Employee training on human rights policies or procedures does not correspond to any SDG.

 

80% of the world’s 250 largest companies report in accordance with the GRI Standards

SustainCase was primarily created to demonstrate, through case studies, the importance of dealing with a company’s most important impacts in a structured way, with use of the GRI Standards. To show how today’s best-run companies are achieving economic, social and environmental success – and how you can too.

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References:

1) This case study is based on published information by Goldcorp, located at the link below. For the sake of readability, we did not use brackets or ellipses. However, we made sure that the extra or missing words did not change the report’s meaning. If you would like to quote these written sources from the original, please revert to the original on the Global Reporting Initiative’s Sustainability Disclosure Database at the link:

http://database.globalreporting.org/

2) https://www.globalreporting.org/standards/gri-standards-download-center/

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