Management of Salient Issues

Salient human rights issues are addressed in line with our Human Rights Policy, Principles of Business Conduct, and Supplier Code of Conduct, as well as the following supporting policies:

Together these policies, along with relevant external standards and initiatives (such as the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights, of which we were a founding member) form the overall framework that guides our sustainability programs, and by extension, our management of human rights. Supporting this framework are internal governance and management systems that provide the details on how we operate.

As noted above, all employees are trained on our PBC, which sets forth the global system of principles that our workforce must follow in all activities and integrates our commitment to promoting the rule of law and respecting human rights. In addition, all suppliers (including contractors) receive our Supplier Code of Conduct, which is based on our PBC and helps ensure our expectations and standards will be applied by all involved in our operations.

For more information on our application of the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights (including associated training) refer to: 2016 Report to the Voluntary Principles Plenary.

Stakeholder Engagement
We formally engage with a range of stakeholders including rights holders (such as employees and community members) and other interested stakeholders (such as development institutions, investors, banks, NGOs, civil society, government and suppliers/contractors) on an ongoing basis.

In the ‘internal’ context, for example, employees may be engaged on an ongoing basis via:

  • Internal company communications
  • Everyday interactions with line managers
  • Performance reviews
  • Formal internal grievance mechanisms
  • Interactions with labor representatives
  • Training

In the ‘external’ context each of our mine sites maintains 5-year community engagement and development plans that identify affected or interested parties for ongoing engagement and consultation. Issues raised help inform each operation’s Sustainable Development Risk Register and assist in developing social investment strategies. Hundreds of individuals and entities are engaged annually via (for example):

  • Community foundations
  • Formal external grievance mechanisms
  • Community liaison officers
  • Workshops
  • Participatory group panels
  • Town hall meetings
  • Surveys

External engagement also occurs through regulatory consultation processes with local governments and community groups, including indigenous peoples.

Beyond this, dedicated in-field human rights engagement takes place under our series of site-level HRIAs. These are organized around the level of risk or impact posed by each site (as determined by the 2014 Corporate HRIA) and/or practical considerations.

Under our site-level HRIA process, we use third-party consultants to conduct structured interviews with stakeholders, all of whom are offered the option of anonymity. Interviews are carried out without the presence of Freeport-McMoRan personnel (other than when those interviews are of such personnel). Interviews with 'internal' stakeholders (such as employees and onsite contractors) are held onsite, while interviews with 'external' stakeholders (such as community members, NGOs, officials, etc.) are either held at locations of their choosing or in "neutral" premises.

Key criteria for identifying stakeholders to engage as part of our series of site-level HRIAs include the following:

  • The likelihood that a stakeholder's human rights might be undermined by our business activities and/or relationships (as well as the degree of potential severity of such an impact)
  • The severity of any negative impacts linked to our business and/or relationships that have undermined a stakeholder's human rights
  • The specific vulnerability of certain stakeholders to negative human rights impacts linked to our business and/or relationships
  • The degree to which a stakeholder is either unwilling or unable to use conventional grievance mechanisms (whether public or linked to Freeport-McMoRan) to raise human rights concerns
  • The degree to which stakeholders are able to provide insight into the existence and/or nature of any negative human rights impacts our business and/or relationships have on themselves, their communities and/or third-parties

Examples of the kinds of stakeholders we engaged in the TFM HRIA can be found here: 2015 Working Toward Sustainable Development Report.

Examples of the kinds of stakeholders we plan to engage in our 2017 Cerro Verde HRIA can be found here.

For information on our ongoing stakeholder engagement refer to: Stakeholder Engagement.

Assessing Impacts
Changes in our sustainability focus areas are identified via our ongoing Sustainable Development Risk Register process. For example, the sale of our interest in the Tenke Fungurume Mine in the DRC and the fact that artisanal mining is now only an issue of concern at PTFI in Indonesia means that artisanal mining is no longer a sustainability focus area for the company as a whole.

Our ongoing program of site-level HRIAs act as a form of ‘deep-dive’ verification exercise that builds on our established Sustainable Development Risk Register process. These assessments use a comprehensive and dedicated HRIA methodology that is aligned with the UN Guiding Principles to identify and prioritize each site’s human rights risks and impacts. In many cases, some of these risks and impacts may already have been identified via the site’s ‘mainstream’ Sustainable Development Risk Register. But the application of a specific ‘human rights lens’ means these site-level HRIAs are able to:

  • Supplement these results with otherwise ‘hidden / unreported’ risks and impacts that are not otherwise being captured (including through direct engagement with affected and potentially-affected rights holders)
  • Use a structured framework to prioritize identified risks and impacts using the specific criteria set out in the UN Guiding Principles (e.g. scope, scale and remediability)
  • Deliver additional analytical insight into the identified risks and impacts from a specific human rights perspective

As such, these site-level HRIAs help us test our established human rights relevant management systems to ensure they are effective in identifying and mitigating human rights risks and impacts.

Integrating Findings and Taking Action
Where gaps are identified via site-level HRIAs, we work with cross-functional teams responsible for managing the issues linked to the relevant risk/impact to develop action plans. These plans support continuous improvement of existing systems and processes, and include the identification/definition of:

  • Causal relationship to the site
  • Risk/impact severity and frequency
  • Affected rights holders and locations
  • Action plan objectives
  • Existing risk/impact controls
  • Additional actions to be taken (including responsible persons and completion dates)
  • Reference documents
  • Resourcing requirements

These action plans are embedded and tracked within the site’s Sustainable Development Risk Register process. For information on the results of the TFM HRIA and how they were integrated and acted upon prior to TFM’s sale refer to: 2015 Working Toward Sustainable Development Report.

Tracking Performance
Direct input from rights holders, as well as first-hand assessment of potential and actual impacts (e.g. through site inspection), are key components of our site-level HRIA processes, which are helping us test the effectiveness of our existing Sustainable Development related processes and systems.

The 2015 TFM HRIA results, for example, confirmed that TFM’s:

  • Mature workforce grievance mechanism was effective in identifying employee-related impacts
  • Community grievance management system was largely effective in capturing community-related impacts
  • ISO 14001-certified environmental management system and OHSAS 18001-certified health and safety management system were relatively effective in helping minimize related human rights impacts

For more information on the TFM HRIA refer to pages 19-20 of our refer to: 2015 Working Toward Sustainable Development Report.

We have established multiple mechanisms for employees and others to report concerns. One of the primary mechanisms is the FCX Compliance Line, a phone system managed by an independent third party that allows for anonymous reporting of issues or concerns relating to our PBCs, policies or procedures. In addition, the company offers a similar web-based reporting system, also operated by a third party, along with an option for direct email to our Compliance Department. These accessible channels complement our long-established community and human rights grievance mechanisms in our areas of operation. We are committed to:

  • Protecting the confidentiality of anyone who reports potential violations
  • Cooperating with human rights-related investigations
  • Supporting appropriate remediation for proven violations

We do not tolerate retaliation against any employee for raising a question or concern in good faith. Use of our internal and external grievance mechanisms does not preclude access to judicial or other non-judicial grievance mechanisms.

In 2017 we are embarking on a project to review our community grievance management standard operating procedure against the UN Guiding Principles effectiveness criteria for non-judicial grievance mechanisms. Before finalization, the procedure will be reviewed with a set of community stakeholders to ensure its effectiveness from their perspective. This process will include an examination of whether community stakeholders believe local mechanisms are well known, understood and fit for purpose based on the local context.

For information on complaints received via the Freeport-McMoRan Compliance Line and how they are processed, refer to: Principles of Business Conduct.

For information on complaints received via the Community Grievance Mechanism and how they are processed, refer to: Assessing and Managing Impacts.

For information on the number of complaints received via the Human Rights Grievance Mechanism and how they are handled, refer to: 2016 Report to the Voluntary Principles Plenary.