The key internally agreed definition of human rights is contained in the United Nations Universal Declaration on Human Rights, proclaimed in 1948 by the UN General Assembly. Human Rights are the rights to which all individuals are entitled simply by virtue of their humanity, regardless of their race, national or social origin or other status. They include civil and political rights (e.g. right to freedom from torture) and economic, social and cultural rights (e.g. right to a standard of living adequate for health and wellbeing).
It is widely recognised that Governments have prime responsibility for protecting human rights. However, 70 years on from the proclamation of the Declaration, it is now clear that beyond complying with the laws and regulations of host Governments, that business has an obligation to respect human rights and to ensure access to remedy for those affected by human rights abuses.
MMG is committed to respecting the human rights in the communities in which we live and operate, and to providing access to effective remedy where we make an impact.
To help achieve this, we operate in accordance with the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights and the United National Global Compact principles. We are also signatories to the United Nations Global Compact process under the auspices of our major shareholder China Minmetals Corporation.
Through our membership of the International Council on Mining and Metals (ICMM) we commit to respecting human rights under Principle 3 of the ICMM Sustainable Development Framework. This commitment has been strengthened through the development of joint industry and civil society guidance on key issues such as Free Prior and Informed Consent and the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, and with the recent release of a set of performance expectations .
We also participate in ICMM convened member discussions and peer learning on a wide range of business and human rights issues, including the role of business with regards to civic freedoms and defenders.
We recognise that the concept of human rights covers a broad range of interrelated issues, requiring an integrated approach across numerous business functions. At MMG, our Human Resources, Supply, Community Relations, Stakeholders Relations, Security, Exploration and Project Development functions have specific responsibilities for upholding our commitment to human rights.
To see more examples of how MMG manages human rights issues in our business, please follow the links below to the MMG 2017 Sustainability Report to learn more about our commitments to:
- Freedom of association and collective bargaining
- Business Ethics
- Security and human rights
- Supply chain management
We know that we have an impact on communities, both positive and negative, and that these impacts can lead to significant stakeholder concerns. To help MMG manage these concerns, each operation has a site-specific grievance mechanism in place, aligned with the common MMG Grievance Procedure, to facilitate the timely, culturally appropriate investigation and response to grievances by community members. This process is non-judicial, complements existing legislative remedies and reflects our commitment to the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights.
We are working with the Centre for Social Responsibility in Mining (CSRM) at the University of Queensland to better align criteria for community incidents and risks and their corresponding reporting process.
The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and MMG
Through the management of human rights issues as part of our daily operations, we have been able to align our approach to human rights through a targeted subset of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as the overarching framework for our contribution to human development.
In 2016, MMG decided to align the focus of our social development initiatives with relevant United Nations SDGs. The UN SDGs will now be used as a central tenet in establishing a consistent monitoring and evaluation framework across MMG operations.
MMG is committed to the continuous improvement in the wellbeing of communities surrounding our operations through our commitment to the protection of human rights, the ongoing monitoring and improvement of its grievance management process and our alignment with the relevant UN SDGs.