communities

Barrick’s operations can have both positive and negative impacts on the people and communities near our mines.

A mine can bring increased economic activity, create local jobs, and provide tax revenue that helps support local governments in delivering services. In 2015 alone, we contributed more than $6.3 billion in the way of payments to governments, purchases of goods and services, and investments in the communities and countries where we operate. Mining can also contribute to social change, use scarce resources and contribute to an unsustainable influx of people into a community.

We do not see the good things that we do as offsetting all the negative impacts we may have. For this reason, we work as hard at mitigating potential negative impacts as we do at leveraging mutual and sustained value for all of our partners.

National and Local Employment

Our Approach

At Barrick, we believe strong relationships with communities are about getting the simple things right: managing our impacts (such as dust, noise and traffic), doing what we say we will, resolving grievances, and buying and hiring locally.

To create this kind of mindset among our people, we have developed a Community Relations Policy, which is supported by a Community Relations Standard along with procedures, guidelines, toolkits and comprehensive assurance reviews. Together, these form Barrick’s Community Relations Management System (CRMS). The CRMS creates explicit performance requirements for community relations at Barrick projects and operations to ensure we get the simple — and important — things right and live up to our commitment of creating long-term mutual benefit in the communities where we operate.

CRMS Workflow

Our Progress

  • In 2015, we developed a local content framework to support the use of local labor, services and goods at our sites. The development of the framework was led by the Community Relations team in collaboration with all groups impacted by local content policies, including supply chain leads, human resource leads, mine General Managers, country Executive Directors, construction managers and project directors. This framework outlines the steps needed to develop local employment and local procurement programs, referencing best international practice and embedding lessons learnt from other Barrick sites. An important emphasis is on engaging with internal end users on the mine site and making sure local content programs align with their needs and concerns.
  • Barrick created an inter-site working group on grievance management in 2015 to share best practices and the challenges faced when implementing grievance mechanisms. The group consists of grievance mechanism officers at various sites and other team members who help manage grievances. Lessons shared in the group are a source of significant learning for the company and will be reflected in subsequent guidance to improve grievance mechanisms (for more information see here).

Priorities in 2016

  • Revise the Community Relations Standard so that it is aligned with the decentralized company structure and drives accountability for managing social risks down to the site level, shifting our focus to outcomes on the ground.
  • Continue to embed the Local Content Framework across all Barrick’s sites. Support sites in the development of their Local Content programs.
  • Three sites will undergo internal audits of their compliance to the Community Relations Management System.
  • Building and maintaining strong relationships with core stakeholders is a company-wide priority for 2016 and will be a metric by which executive compensation is determined.

Engagement

Effectively engaging with local communities is as important to us as any other part of the business, as it helps us to protect and maintain our license to operate. We engage with local communities at all our operations and projects. Our community partners expect and deserve the opportunity to have a voice in decisions that affect them. This means providing them access to information about the operations, including their social, economic and environmental impacts, and access to company officials who will listen and act on community concerns. By showing respect to local stakeholders we can facilitate permitting and approvals, promote a more stable operating environment and form lasting partnerships.

100% of sites have stakeholder engagement plans.

Barrick’s Community Relations Management System (CRMS) facilitates the creation of strong partnerships by providing our sites with guidance and tools on engagement best practices.

These best practices include:

  • Mapping stakeholders and assessing their priorities and concerns;
  • Establishing a culturally appropriate way for people to communicate directly to the company;
  • Developing respectful and two-way dialogue in order to build trust;
  • Providing methods for stakeholders to raise concerns and grievances;
  • Documenting engagement activities for internal and external audiences.

Embedding community engagement within a corporate management system gives us confidence that all our sites are working with communities in a consistent, comprehensive and transparent manner.

Learn more

At the Alturas exploration camp in Chile, Barrick knows that direct, transparent, and consistent communication with stakeholders is essential to our future success. We know that a potential project can only succeed through strong relationships with community partners. This is why we started engaging and listening to community members even as we started drilling. As a result, Barrick has identified that local employment is the most significant concern to the local community and, as a result, we are working on plans to ensure the 2016-17 drill season maximizes job opportunities for people from nearby communities.

Grievance Management

An effective grievance mechanism allows local communities to communicate their concerns and issues directly to Barrick so that they may be resolved. This allows our sites to take early action to resolve any issues before they grow into a serious social incident.

Since 2012, all our sites have had operating grievance mechanisms. We are now focused on strengthening and improving the effectiveness of these grievance mechanisms.

100% of our sites have a community grievance mechanism

In general, the types and number of grievances vary significantly between sites. At the majority of our sites, grievances are primarily related to employment and procurement opportunities, the mine’s potential impacts on water, contractor conduct in the community, and how sites treat local employees. At the Porgera Joint Venture in Papua New Guinea, there are a significant number of grievances related to land, driven by ongoing discussions about resettlement and compensation.

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Social & Economic Development

We have an opportunity to contribute significantly to social and economic development in the communities and countries where we operate.

We do this by creating local jobs, buying goods and services from local businesses, paying our fair share of taxes and partnering with governments and civil society on local priorities, such as education and economic diversification.

64% of jobs are filled by employees from the local area, across the company.

Communities and host governments rightly expect to share in mining’s benefits. When we live up to their expectations, we are partners with host governments and communities in their own development, contributing to a more stable and prosperous society and a more secure license to operate.

$1.1 billion spent on local goods and services in 2015.

Economic Contributions

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Indigenous Peoples

Four of Barrick’s operations and three projects are located on or near the traditional territories of Indigenous Peoples. At Barrick, any site where Indigenous Peoples have rights over or special connections to the land where mining-related activities are located is required to develop and implement an Indigenous Peoples Plan that outlines specific actions to engage, address impacts and provide opportunities to Indigenous Peoples.

Considering the values, needs and concerns of Indigenous Peoples in site activities can support the development of long-term, mutually beneficial relationships. Developing partnerships with Indigenous Peoples can contribute to sustainable land management and a stable operating environment.

Barrick has endorsed the International Council on Mining and Metal’s (ICMM) Indigenous Peoples and Mining Position Statement. Sites will work towards obtaining consent from significantly impacted Indigenous Peoples for new projects and major changes to existing projects.

In October 2015, a memorandum of understanding was signed with the Métis Nation of Ontario, to establish a mutually beneficial, cooperative; productive and ongoing working relationship between the Hemlo mine and the Métis Nation of Ontario.

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Community Safety

Although many of Barrick’s mining operations are located in uninhabited areas, other operations are on or near lands already occupied or used by other people.

Our presence near these communities can bring potentially adverse impacts, including increased traffic and associated safety risks.
Where there are significant risks to the safety of host communities, the company requires sites to collaborate with local residents in developing a community safety program.

A community safety program identifies the activities required to mitigate all significant potential community safety risks, including, at a minimum, those related to road safety, emergency response and preparedness, and hazardous material transport. These programs are developed and implemented collaboratively with local external stakeholders, including the local community. In addition, obligations for community safety are often included in permitting and regulatory requirements.

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The number of accidents on the main highway near the Lumwana mine was reduced by 50% following the introduction of a community safety plan.

Mine Closure

All Barrick’s mines have a finite operational life. We know that the closure of a mine can have significant social and economic impacts on nearby communities. Furthermore, improperly closed mines can create harmful environmental legacies.

Barrick currently manages 34 closed sites.

We have therefore developed a Mine Closure Management System (MCMS) to help plan for mine closure even before beginning construction of a new mine. We integrate this planning into our decision making by embedding closure considerations into both our Community Relations and Environmental Management Systems.

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In-Migration

Some economically disadvantaged people living in developing countries choose to move closer to large-scale mining operations, attracted by economic and social incentives, such as perceived opportunities for direct or indirect employment and increased accessibility and availability of basic services. It is extremely difficult to control this influx of people. The migrant population tends to concentrate in villages or towns in the immediate vicinity of the mining operation or project, resulting in crowding and often overwhelming the capacity of services in these communities. In-migration is of special concern at the Lumwana mine in Zambia and the Porgera joint venture in Papua New Guinea.

At the Lumwana mine in Zambia, Barrick has been working to manage and mitigate a significant influx of new people into nearby communities. Following an assessment of the drivers of in-migration, the site developed and implemented an Influx Management Plan. The plan includes a multi-stakeholder forum and capacity building for town planning; promotion of the increased presence of government and increased law and order; improved infrastructure, including access roads, water wells and functional bus stops; and the construction of a fence for the Manyama primary school.  Key to these initiatives is that the plan is being implemented in partnership with the local government and local communities and is a part of the regional government’s integrated development plan.

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Land Acquisition & Resettlement

At times, construction or expansion of mines may lead to land acquisition and resettlement of local communities, which can entail both the physical displacement of people and, at times, disruption of their livelihoods.

Poorly planned and managed land acquisition, including physical resettlement and economic displacement, can adversely impact communities. Minimizing the need for displacement, and effectively managing the impacts and risks where displacement is unavoidable, will limit negative outcomes, protect human rights and support our license to operate.

We seek to avoid resettlement whenever we can by exploring alternative project designs.

When resettlement cannot be avoided, our community relations teams work together with affected households, communities and host governments to manage resettlement in a manner consistent with local laws and international best practice. In 2015, Barrick did not engage in any resettlement activities.

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Artisanal Mining

Millions of people around the world maintain their livelihoods through artisanal and small-scale mining (ASM). Barrick has operations that are adjacent to thriving ASM communities, primarily in Papua New Guinea and Peru. The individuals and groups engaged in ASM near our operations are important local stakeholders, and we work with them towards a safer, healthier and more profitable relationship.
Our approach is to support efforts to legitimize what is sometimes an illegal activity — often conducted in poor and unsafe working conditions — but which drives the local economy.

As part of our community engagement activities, we have supported the artisanal mining formalization process launched by the Peruvian government. The development and legalization of artisanal miners through this formalization process — including coal miners near our Lagunas Norte mine — will provide access for the ASM community to credit and markets, along with safer working conditions.

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Illegal Mining

Illegal miners are people who enter a mine property without permission with the intention of stealing gold-bearing ore. This differs from artisanal miners, who generate income from labor-intensive mining activities, often alongside large-scale mining operations.

If not appropriately managed, trespass of illegal miners onto Barrick leases presents risks for employees, contractors and illegal miners themselves (particularly with respect to their safety); causes loss of production; and can create conflict that affects Barrick’s social license to operate.

Our response to illegal mining is primarily driven by safety concerns – for both our employees and the trespassers themselves. The level of criminal and violent behavior often displayed by illegal miners can threaten both the local community and our employees, the vast majority of whom are also from local communities.

When incursions by illegal miners occur, our security personnel, who have been trained in the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights, are the first to engage in a dialogue with them, to encourage them to leave for the sake of their own safety and that of our employees.

Learn more

Community Relations

Barrick’s Grievance Mechanism Officers Share Best Practices and Challenges

 

Development

Barrick Pueblo Viejo Recognized for its Economic Value to the Dominican Republic

 

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