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Security and human rights
In some parts of the world security risks are high and corruption requires us to take our own precautions, rather than rely on national police and armed forces. We have company-wide security requirements to help keep employees, contractors and facilities safe in a way that respects human rights and security of local communities.
Protecting our staff and facilities can be complicated in countries where corruption or the use of severe security methods prevents the use of the police or army. We apply strict standards to our security procedures.
We are an active supporter of the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights the result of collaboration between governments, energy companies and non-governmental organisations (NGOs) in 2000.
The Voluntary Principles help guide companies in maintaining the safety and security of their operations within an operating framework that supports respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms. The Voluntary Principles initiative was formalised as the Voluntary Principles Association, formed by 20 companies, along with governments and NGOs in 2012.
We refer to the principles in our contracts with private security companies and when working with government security forces.
Armed security standards
Workers at the Bonga floating production storage and offloading vessel, Nigeria
We only allow armed security when required by law or when other ways to manage security risks have been considered. All armed guards must meet our standards based on UN guidelines and conventions on the use of force and the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights. Shell’s security personnel receive mandatory training under the requirements of the principles.
Armed guards must first try to resolve a security incident without using force. If this fails then they should only use the minimum force needed and offer help to anyone – including offenders – who may be injured as a result.