Community grievance mechanisms in the oil and gas
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Community grievance mechanisms in the oil and gas industry IPIECA January 2015
IPIECA’s new manual provides practical step-by-step guidance on how to plan and implement operational-level community grievance mechanisms (CGMs), and how to design and manage corporate CGM frameworks.
The manual draws on the practical experiences of seven pilot
operational-level CGMs conducted by member companies as well as shared
learning from other IPIECA members and stakeholders. It forms part of
the industry’s positive response to the United Nations Guiding
Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs), which promote the use
of effective CGMs and their value to all concerned parties.
The oil and gas sector recognizes that its operational activities, even those of the highest standard, can have varied social and environmental impacts and can raise interest, concerns and complaints. As a result, many companies are implementing CGMs, which provide channels for affected individuals or communities to raise questions or concerns and have them addressed in a prompt, fair and consistent manner.
Applied effectively, CGMs offer efficient, timely and low-cost forms of conflict resolution for all concerned parties. Used as integral elements of broader stakeholder and community engagement, they can enhance local relationships, reduce negative impacts and help businesses to adhere to operational plans, schedules and costs.
Presented in three main sections and subdivided into ‘modules’, the manual can be read in full or in parts of specific interest to users. Step-by-step overviews are provided throughout, together with practical advice for those implementing or managing CGMs.
Section 1 provides an introduction to CGMs, explaining terms and definitions, the relationship of CGMs to stakeholder engagement, the legal context and a short guide to meeting the UNGPs’ eight effectiveness criteria.
Section 2 focuses on the implementation and day-to-day management of effective operational-level CGMs. Three modules provide step-by-step guidance on planning, design and the procedure for managing grievances.
Section 3 explores the corporate framework for directing and managing CGMs and highlights pathways to company-wide implementation. It explains the corporate role and emphasizes the need to win support from business leaders and key decision makers for CGM implementation.
The manual’s Annex has a broad range of practical CGM tools.