Principle 8

ALL BUSINESS SHOULD: Respect and support children’s rights in security arrangements

“War and politics are always adult games, but children are al­ways the losers.”

Eliza Kantardzic, 17, Bosnia and Herzegovina, United Nations Security Council Meeting on Children and Armed Conflict, 2002

The corporate responsibility to respect includes:

  1. Respecting children’s rights in security arrangements
    1. When making and implementing security arrangements, whether with public or private security service providers, conduct human rights due diligence with particular attention to any adverse impact on the rights of children.
    2. Ensure that respect for the rights of children is explicitly addressed in the business’s security contracts.
    3. Do not recruit or use children in security arrangements either directly or through private or public security service providers.
  2. The corporate commitment to support includes:

  3. Supporting children’s rights in security arrangements
    All business is encouraged to apply evolving best practices in the management of security services provided by private contractors or public security forces.
GOOD PRACTICE: The Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights
Established in 2000, the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights – an initiative by governments, non-governmental organizations, and companies – provides guidance to business in the extractive and energy sectors on maintaining the safety and security of their operations within a framework that ensures respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms. The Voluntary Principles are the only human rights guidelines designed specifically for oil, gas and mining companies. They cover three categories: risk assessment, public security and private security. As stated in the Voluntary Principles: “The participants recognize the importance of the promotion and protection of human rights throughout the world and the constructive role business and civil society – including non-governmental organizations, labour/trade unions, and local communities – can play in advancing these goals.”