communities & Indigenous groups benefit from our socio-economic programs directly or indirectly
Although mining can be a driver of economic growth and positive social development, it can also have negative impacts on host communities. Stakeholder interest in and scrutiny over the effects of mining activities on communities and groups impacted by those activities, particularly vulnerable groups, is growing. Expectations for the industry have increased. Mining companies are expected to engage with host communities and help them understand the full range of possible impacts, both positive and negative, throughout the mining lifecycle. Social acceptance is gained through transparency, engagement, and impact management. A company’s failure to establish social acceptance with host communities can manifest in conflict and social unrest and result in legal challenges, production delays, the revocation of permits and licenses, and even the suspension of mining operations.
Mining companies can provide significant economic benefits in their host countries. Moreover, companies are increasingly under pressure to provide value to a broader and more inclusive range of stakeholders. Sharing the benefits from mining operations with host communities is a key component of social acceptance, failure to do so can lead to conflict, legal disputes, and project or operational delays or disruptions. Companies create value in local communities through taxes, royalties and fees paid to governments, direct investments in community programs, development planning and infrastructure upgrades, and local employment and procurement. If not managed properly, however, these contributions can create economic dependence or wealth disparity within communities.
At Pan American Silver, we want host communities to see our presence as a positive factor in their lives. We work hard to understand community needs and interests and to identify and implement beneficial and viable social programs and that contribute to long-term community well-being and self-reliance. Our objective is to invest in projects and programs that benefit host communities beyond the lifespans of our mines.
Human rights are one of the foundations of sustainability. All companies have a responsibility to respect international human rights standards. This requires companies to prevent infringements on human rights and to address adverse impacts that they cause or contribute to, or that are directly linked to their operations, products or services. Largely due to their location and nature of operations, mining companies have the potential to impact human rights. Human rights issues have become increasingly important for the mining industry, the investor community, and the public. Governments and civil society are requesting improved management of and transparency on supply chain human rights. Consequently, industry groups such as MAC, of which Pan American Silver is a member, are working to support member companies in aligning with global human rights objectives.
At Pan American Silver, respect for human rights is a principle that has guided our relationships with communities throughout our history of operating in the Americas. The work we do affects the lives of the communities with which we engage. It is paramount not only that we take steps to understand the linkages between the impacts of our activities and human rights, but also that we progressively implement proper measures to respect human rights and manage our potential impacts on rights holders.