Why is gender still off the agenda of mining companies?

Research Insight

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The Responsible Mining Foundation has been tracking gender action by mining companies since 2016 and the latest results are just in. The findings again show striking contrasts in what companies choose to focus on – gender balance in headquarter teams is quite widely addressed while gender in affected communities and in the workplace is largely ignored. And despite much talk about gender and women (these terms are typically mentioned dozens of times in companies’ sustainability reports), gender action is still very thin on the ground at mine sites, including for women mine workers.

At the same time there is an increasing wealth of guidance and frameworks on gender in mining showing what needs to be done to ensure that women share the benefits of mining and that women as well as men are protected from any harmful impacts. This begs the question: what are companies waiting for before taking gender action where it matters most?


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