The IPIECA new Community Grievance Mechanism (CGM) Toolbox

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IPIECA has recently released a new Community Grievance Mechanism (CGM) toolbox based on the operational experiences of IPIECA member companies. It is relevant for companies who have existing CGM processes and those seeking to establish a CGM.

This toolbox enables oil and gas companies to create, implement and raise awareness of Community Grievance Mechanisms (CGMs). Wherever oil and gas companies do business, engaging with affected communities and responding to their concerns are essential to operating successfully whilst ensuring respect for human rights. Processes that allow concerns to be raised and remedied are an important method of achieving this aim.

They provide a means by which affected individuals or communities can raise questions or concerns with a company and have them addressed in a prompt and consistent manner. When applied effectively they offer the prospect of a more efficient, immediate and inexpensive form of dispute resolution for both companies and communities.

The IPIECA CGM Tools include:

    • Training Pack – to introduce Community Grievance Mechanisms
    • How-To Guide – to develop a new Community Grievance Mechanism or to improve an existing mechanism
    • Template Procedure – a prototype Community Grievance Mechanism that can be adapted to the specific needs of a project site
    • Complaint Risk Assessment Tool – to assess an operation’s complaint exposure
    • Diagnostic Tool – to improve an existing Community Grievance Mechanism
    • Grievance Register – to monitor, track and learn from grievances/complaints

IPIECA vs. Boréalis Application

Boréalis identifies industry leading practices (IPIECA, IFC, ICMM) to continuously improve the business processes embedded in its Boréalis system. Good practices are enforced within the Boréalis to make them mandatory. Here is an example on how the Boréalis Grievance component follows the IPIECA CGM.

Implementing a Community Grievance Mechanism

A Community Grievance Mechanism is a procedure for receiving, investigating and responding to questions or complaints from community stakeholders. Even when a business is managed to the highest standards, concerns related to its activities are inevitable from time to time.

A Grievance Mechanism:

    • Improves stakeholder relationships by demonstrating responsiveness and respect
    • Reduces value erosion by addressing concerns and preventing disputes from escalating
    • Facilitates learning in order to improve the management of impacts

IPIECA proposes a CGM process in 7 steps from receiving the grievance to closing it out. The Boréalis CGM process is similar. The terminology used is slightly different but the workflow embedded in the Boréalis application remains the same as the one proposed by IPIECA.

Tracking Community Grievances

IPIECA recommends monitoring and reporting outcomes of the CGM by analyzing trends and lessons learned to improve company performance. Periodic evaluation of the effectiveness of the Community Grievance Mechanism is good practice and the integration of the findings into management systems is strongly recommended.

Here are some Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) proposed by IPIECA to monitor and report outcomes of the CGM:

    • Average Response Time
    • Target Resolution Timeframe (days)
    • % Satisfied with Process
    • % Satisfied with Outcome
    • Response Target (Days)
    • Average Duration to Response
    • Average Duration to Closure

Here are some graphs proposed in the IPIECA CGM Toolbox:

    • Number of complaints per village in 2013
    • Number of complaints per unit in 2013
    • Number of complaints by type in 2013
    • Number of complaints per month in 2013

Boréalis proposes a similar approach through its status reports embedded in the Boréalis system. KPIs, graphs and trends can be filtered by period, type and location (village). Boréalis status reports also enable users to monitor other stakeholder engagement activities such as consultations and commitments in one unique status report.

The IPIECA CGM toolbox is the perfect tool for extractive companies who want to quickly implement a grievance mechanism. The Boréalis application works as an Enterprise Management System and will complement the IPIECA toolbox to enforce their practices and make them easy to apply.

About the IPIECA

IPIECA is the global oil and gas industry association for environmental and social issues. IPIECA was formed in 1974 following the launch of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). IPIECA is the only global association involving both the upstream and downstream oil and gas industry on environmental and social issues.

IPIECA helps the oil and gas industry improve its environmental and social performance by:

    • developing, sharing and promoting good practices and solutions;
    • enhancing and communicating knowledge and understanding;
    • engaging members and others in the industry;
    • working in partnership with key stakeholders.

IPIECA currently has working groups that address the following areas: biodiversity, climate change, health, oil spill preparedness, fuels and products, reporting, social responsibility, and water.

Source : IPIECA

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