We understand the important role transparent, relevant and well-researched security practices play in respecting human rights and ensuring safe operations for our workforce and for the local communities where we operate. We are committed to effectively managing and administering our security programs in accordance with industry best practices, local and national legal requirements and company policies. We pride ourselves on our commitment to security practices, our understanding of the importance of being a responsible corporate citizen and our responsibility to be an active participant in the area of security practices. As a result, we are actively involved with national and international organizations who share this commitment to human rights and transparent security practices, such as the United Nations Global Compact, the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights (Voluntary Principles), the World Gold Council and the Mining Association of Canada.
Our security teams conduct regular in-depth risk analyses to determine threats to our workforce within their areas of operation and influence. Our sites are required to develop and regularly review and update security plans in accordance with all applicable laws and regulations, as well as in conformity with our Human Rights Policy and Security Policy. When local conditions require us to deploy armed staff, careful consideration is given to this deployment, and additional safety measures and training are implemented as necessary.
In 2016, we became a signatory to the Voluntary Principles. Established in 2000, the Voluntary Principles are designed to guide companies in maintaining the safety and security of their operations within an operating framework that encourages respect for human rights. As a signatory, we continue to implement the principles across all of our operations, and have aligned our corporate policies and procedures with internationally recognized human rights principles in the provision of security. We actively participate in the Corporate Pillar committee of the Voluntary Principles Initiative and are one of four members of the Corporate Pillar Steering Committee for 2018.
We have designed training programs for security providers at sites based on international best practices. In 2017, 96% of security personnel, which included both Goldcorp Security personnel and contract security personnel, underwent training on the Voluntary Principles. Putting our commitment into practice, we conducted Voluntary Principles awareness training with approximately 279 public security personnel in our areas of operation. Realizing the importance of increasing the number of security personnel with Security and Human Rights training, we offered this training to security personnel both directly and not directly contracted by the company. The majority of the 279 public security personnel who participated in the training were not directly contracted by Goldcorp.
In accordance with the Voluntary Principles, in our high- and medium-risk operations, all security personnel are required to undergo extensive and recurring background checks and receive annual training on the Voluntary Principles, including the requirement to sign a declaration of compliance with our human rights requirements. The security contractors also incorporate general human rights training in their employee orientation. All security staff receive at least one pre-shift briefing per month on the use of force. Company security supervisors provide ongoing training and refresher classes. We do not tolerate non-compliance with our human rights requirements. There are a variety of compliance mechanisms for incident reporting, and we thoroughly investigate all allegations of suspected human rights abuses.
In 2017, Peñasquito, Cerro Negro and Marlin were each assessed by an independent third party, who evaluated their compliance against the Voluntary Principles framework. The results were positive with respect to the levels of implementation of the Voluntary Principles and human rights in general, with each site showing a high level of maturity and demonstrated continuous improvement year over year.
Starting in 2015, we designed a more aggressive and formal implementation plan to ensure continuous compliance with the Voluntary Principles, industry best practices and local and national legal requirements. We began utilizing a Security self-audit program to ensure effective implementation of the Voluntary Principles and sustainability-related management systems. This program includes peer reviews for validation.
Promoting Awareness of the Voluntary Principles with Our External Partners
Our sites provide training on human rights, use of force and the Voluntary Principles to their security personnel and contract security guards. This training is provided through workshops, presentations, videos and role-plays and is documented through attendance sheets or signed certifications. In 2017, several sites also engaged relevant public security partners located within their area of influence in order to build awareness of the Voluntary Principles and their importance. For example, our Security team at Cerro Negro engaged with the Grupo Especial de Operaciones Rurales (a division of the Perito Moreno Police), the Perito Moreno Police and the Gendarmerie in order to review the Voluntary Principles and build awareness of our Code of Conduct, Security and Human Rights policies, as well as our procedures on the use of force. Also, in Peñasquito, we are a key participant in the local Security Council, which is composed of peer companies and public security forces. One objective of this council is to enhance collaboration and share best practices about security management and the respect for human rights. We also share relevant information in order to update our risk assessments. Finally, we promote the Voluntary Principles through outreach and awareness with organizations such as the Canadian Mexican Mining Chamber (Camimex) and the Canadian Chamber of Commerce (CanCham). Our focus remains on prevention, training and awareness and we are committed to working with our external partners to achieve this.
Conflict-Free Gold Standard
The World Gold Council (WGC), the industry’s key marketing body, has recognized that in some places and circumstances, gold may represent a potential source of funding for armed groups involved in civil conflicts. In October 2012, the WGC published the Conflict-Free Gold Standard, which establishes a common approach by which gold producers can assess and provide assurance that their gold has been extracted in a manner that does not cause, support or benefit unlawful armed conflict or contribute to serious human rights abuses or breaches of international humanitarian law. As a member company, we supported the WGC’s efforts in developing the Standard, and implemented it effective January 1, 2013. We produce an annual, independently assured Conflict-Free Gold Report summarizing our conformance to the Standard, which we share on our website.
The Standard requires companies with mines operating in areas considered to be “conflict-affected or high risk” (according to the Heidelberg Conflict Barometer) to evaluate processes and controls and implement additional measures to ensure conformance with the Standard. Although only our Mexican mine is located in an area deemed “conflict-affected or high-risk,” we voluntarily applied the same categorization to our Marlin mine in Guatemala, a decision we based on our internal security assessment.
Our 2017 findings confirmed that all gold and gold-bearing material produced at mining operations where we operate have the appropriate systems and controls in place to conform to the World Gold Council’s Conflict-Free Gold Standard. Conformance with the Standard was subject to independent assurance.
For a copy of our 2017 Conflict-Free Gold Report and more information on the background and structure of the Standard, please visit our download centre at csr.goldcorp.com.