Established in 2000, the Voluntary Principles are a multi-stakeholder initiative that promotes the implementation of a set of principles that guide companies in securing their operations while respecting human rights.
The VPSHR risk review focuses on how the provision of asset security does not pose a risk of human rights abuse to communities and other stakeholders. Private armed guards, local police, for example. Safety issues can also raise security issues. For example, private security guards who consider themselves above the rules of the road, and cause accidents on the roads while patrolling the edges of protected assets.
Ksapa was commissioned to improve a project-specific security policy in a fragmented territory to make it compliant with the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights.
As a reminder, VPSHR are based on three fundamental concepts:
- The need to assess the risks of human rights abuses in a comprehensive manner so that stakeholders take them into account in the conduct of their activities and are able to mitigate these risks of abuse
- Communication, consultation and transparency, particularly with local communities; and
- The importance of ensuring the proper conduct of government security forces, including the proportionate use of force and responding to allegations of human rights abuses.
To this end, Ksapa has established a specific reading grid to identify missing or non-compliant elements of the existing document. These checkpoints, as well as exchanges with the people in charge of organising the project’s security and safety, enabled us to better understand the context and to make progress on improving the policy.
Ksapa made recommendations on the issues of organising security personnel, the use of force and equipment specifically, which require reporting processes and engagement with stakeholders.
RESULTS & NEXT STEPS
The revised document has been given to the internal teams in charge of safety and security issues around the project. It will soon be submitted to the donors for validation before the launch of the project.