Techtronic Industries’ (TTI) sponsorship of RCS Global’s Better Mining program has helped enable a technical collaboration with the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) to end child labor in mining
Aug 30, 2021 – The RCS Global Group and UNICEF have entered a technical collaboration to develop and pilot a toolkit for mine operators and supply chain stakeholders to prevent and counteract child labor in artisanal and small mining (ASM) communities in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
The toolkit will be piloted on at least two mine sites in the DRC which are under monitoring by the TTI supported Better Mining program. Once the development and piloting of the toolkit is complete, it can then be rolled out internationally, serving ASM communities worldwide.
TTI will be supporting and engaging with the progress of the project, which aligns with our commitment to end child labor.
The toolkit itself will contain actionable guidance related to engagement with children and parents on and around sites, as well as health and safety measures including access control to sites, and stakeholder engagement with local authorities and civil society organizations.
“The financial support from Better Mining’s partners, which includes TTI, is critically important for us to be able to engage in projects like this” Nicholas Garrett, CEO of RCS Global said, adding that it is only through ongoing support that this collaboration can move forward to international implementation after the pilot phase.
As a founding partner in the Better Mining program, TTI has supported RCS Global Group, a key leader in responsible sourcing and driver of better practices in artisanal and small-scale mining operations since December 2020.
Better Mining’s scope, as of September 2021, includes 40+ ASM mining sites in cobalt, copper, gold, tantalum, tin and tungsten in the Great Lakes region of Africa.
RCS Global goes out to smaller mining operations to perform in-person monitoring by trained Better Mining staff. These monitors gather responsible sourcing data and digitally transcribe it into quantifiable improvement activity recommendations for local stakeholders to implement. These recommendations are outlined in monthly issued corrective actions plans (CAPs), which are workshopped each month on each mine site.
CAPs contain better practice actions that improve mining conditions through everything from signage and training, to inspections and closures of unsafe pit mines. RCS then verifies and documents progress of on-site implementation activities and reports to TTI and other supporting companies.
Responsible sourcing partnerships are critical to further social justice in vulnerable communities.
TTI contributed US$50,000 to the Better Mining Cobalt Due Diligence and Impact Program run by the RCS Global Group, which funds the monitoring of cobalt and copper mines in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). This monitoring program ultimately improves the sustainability practices of the mines, thereby enhancing the socio-economic conditions of the wider community.
“Considering that approximately two million people in the DRC count on ASM for their livelihoods, we believe that supporting Better Mining and the improvement of artisanal and small-scale mining conditions is paramount,” TTI announced at the time.