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Respecting human rights

ExxonMobil actively promotes respect for human rights and is committed to complying with all applicable laws and regulations.

Our fundamental approach to human rights is consistent with the United Nations Framework and Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights. The Guiding Principles, released in 2011, outline the different, yet complementary, roles of government and business with regard to human rights: the government’s duty to protect human rights and corporations’ responsibility to respect them. ExxonMobil ensures awareness of potential adverse human rights impacts and implements appropriate prevention measures; more details about detecting and preventing potential human rights risks can be found in our section on supply chain management.

We work closely with governments, civil society and industry to strengthen implementation of the Guiding Principles. We actively support IPIECA in its human rights-related work and provided input into the 2013 application of the Guiding Principles to the oil and gas industry guidance document, as well as a 2014 manual on community grievance mechanisms. The manual, which also forms part of the industry response on operational due diligence relating to the Guiding Principles, provides practical, step-by-step guidance on how to plan and implement community grievance mechanisms at the operational level, as well as how to design and manage corporate community grievance mechanism frameworks.

Since 2002, we have actively participated in the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights, a set of principles designed to guide companies in maintaining the safety and security of their operations within an operating framework that encourages respect for human rights. Our Statement and Framework on Security and Human Rights helps implement the Voluntary Principles and includes guidance on working with host governments and private security personnel. ExxonMobil consistently emphasizes the importance of respect for human rights with host governments and private security firms. In addition, we have agreements with the private security firms with which we work that contain requirements to uphold human rights. These include expectations for compliance with relevant local, U.N. and other security-related frameworks.

For years, ExxonMobil has conducted human rights awareness training for personnel who work in high-risk areas. This training includes information about the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights, the requirements of ExxonMobil’s Statement and Framework on Security and Human Rights and expectations regarding the implementation of the Framework in a given country. In 2014, we completed a pilot of a new computer-based human rights training module aimed at further strengthening human rights awareness among employees and select business partners working in high-risk areas. We plan to roll out the training module formally in 2015. ExxonMobil has also developed other training programs that contain a human rights component, including a training module for our socioeconomic team. We have trained people from 17 countries to date, with more training sessions scheduled for 2015.

Our commitment to human rights extends to our workforce and is supported by our Standards of Business Conduct and our Statement on Labor and the Workplace, the latter of which articulates our support for the principles of the International Labor Organization (ILO) 1998 Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work, namely the elimination of child labor, forced labor and workplace discrimination.

ExxonMobil’s standard contract language requires adherence to all applicable laws and regulations, including those related to safety, security, health and the environment. Our procurement group includes clauses in requests for quotations that require our business partners to abide by the prohibition of child and forced labor and the payment of wages in accordance with local regulations.

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