CSR IN CANADA – Human Rights

Canadian companies operating abroad are expected to respect human rights. Developing rigorous CSR practices can help companies avoid causing or contributing to the infringement of human rights, address potential impacts, and prevent or mitigate any human rights impacts that could be linked to their activities. Below are some examples of how Canadian mining and exploration companies have demonstrated respect for human rights in their operations:

Responses by Company

Cartier Resources Inc.

The company demonstrates respect for and promotes human rights by meeting with stakeholders to discuss concerns with respect to our projected exploration activities.

Casa Minerals Inc.

Our projects are only in BC, and we abide by provincial and national laws and practices.Footnote 1

Freeport Resources Ltd.

We work with a local company in the town nearest to our site who we trust to find the best people for the scope of workwe plan to undertake.  We believe in developing relationships with the people we are working with, based on respect and compassion. We think this is the best way to understand the needs of the local people.

Response continued

We have been patient and respectful with the Nunatsiavut government, who are engaged in implementing the modern land claims treaty applicable in the area and whose time available to deal with us is often constrained.

In regards to programs or policies related to training or engaging with our employees on the subject of human rights, due to our company size, we use a common sense, case by case, humanistic approach. We are not in a position to generate formal policy and do not believe it would be of benefit to our efforts.

HudBay Minerals Inc.

We have a number of elements that demonstrate and promote respect for human rights: our Human Rights Policy is approved by our Board of Directors and is publicly available on our website;  In our annual CSR report we describe our governance structure related to human rights, including which Board Committee is mandated to oversee the human rights performance of our company;  our Code of Conduct includes provisions defining our expectations regarding non-discrimination and a harassment free workplace;  our corporate standards on stakeholder engagement and community grievances; in our higher risk location we have been carrying out approximately quarterly reviews of the implementation of the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights; in our annual CSR report we provide a summary of the number and nature of grievances we have received at each location (http://www.hudbayminerals.com/files/cr2013/en/engagement.html);  we run Aboriginal cultural awareness workshops for employees in Manitoba.

Response continued

Through the development of our Stakeholder Engagement and grievance mechanism standards in 2014 we carried out extensive engagement within our company on the elements of human rights and the HudBay Human Rights Policy.  We are in the process of developing an introductory training on Human Rights for all employees.

Independence Gold Corp.

The company demonstrates respect for and promotes human rights by ensuring that our personnel in the field maintain a respectful attitude towards local communities.

NOVAGOLD Resources Inc.

The company's commitment to respect human rights is set forth in the Human Rights Policy which is applicable to all directors, officers, employees, and contractors. In addition, the company interacts with local stakeholders, including Aboriginal groups, through intensive community outreach and development programs which are intended to develop mutual respect and understanding of Aboriginal cultures, customs, and beliefs. 

Response continued

All of our key staff have received training in the specific cultures and practices of the Aboriginal communities that we interact with.  We emphasize the importance of treating local stakeholders with respect in the context of their traditional ways of life.  We consider this extremely important in ensuring that we are protective of the human rights of those whose lives would be affected by our projects.

Softrock Minerals Ltd.

The company demonstrates respect for and promotes the human rights of employees, contractors, host communities, and other affected and interested parties through education and equal opportunity.  The company engages with its employees on the subject of human rights at open forums every quarter.

Tashota Resources Inc.

The company demonstrates respect for and promotes the human rights of employees, contractors, host communities and other affected and interested parties by written commitment.

Typhoon Exploration Inc.

We inform the surrounding population about developments and listen closely to the needs and requests of individuals or communities in the surrounding area.

Zenyatta Ventures Ltd.

The company promotes human rights through company policy and procedure. We work as closely as possible with our host countries and communities, respecting laws and customs. We minimize adverse effects and strive to improve every aspect of our performance. We employ local people at all levels and ensure fair and equitable transfer of benefits and enhancement of opportunities.


The following companies indicated that they had adopted programs or policies related to training or engaging with their employees on the subject of human rights, but declined to include further details:

  • Skyharbour Resources Ltd.