Advancing mining and human rights

Australian minerals industry and leading business sustainability initiative collaborate to advance human rights dialogue

(Brisbane, 28 October 2013) The Minerals Council of Australia (MCA) and the Global Compact Network Australia (GCNA) today released a publication to advance mining and human rights in Australia.

“Australian mining companies operate in increasingly complex social and political environments in which the imperative and the practical measures of respecting human rights are integral to contemporary operations,” according to MCA Chief Executive Officer, Mitch Hooke.

“Demonstrating respect for the rights of the people living and working in mining-affected communities is critical to building and sustaining a project’s social license to operate. Respecting human rights is not just the right thing to do, it also makes good business sense to earn and maintain the confidence of the community, starting with their basic human entitlements.

“This takes industry leadership, on the ground commitment to the systemic management of human rights and respect of the sovereignty of governments and their laws and institutions.”

GCNA Executive Manager, Alice Cope said, “Mining activities tend to have a significant footprint, which can bring risks of negative human rights impacts. Understanding and respecting human rights, both in Australia and offshore, is critical for mining companies to contribute positively to communities and development more broadly.”

The Australian Minerals Industry and Human Rights: Managing Human Rights Risks and Opportunities through the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights highlights how Australian minerals companies are implementing the United Nations’ framework on business and human rights to manage risk and maximise the opportunities to contribute positively to recognition and protection of human rights.

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