Human rights are the basic rights and freedoms to which all humans are entitled. The freedom to life, liberty and personal security. The right to equality and freedom from discrimination and degrading treatment.
In April 2019, Duke Energy was one of the first companies in our industry to adopt a Human Rights Policy that outlines policies and practices to ensure an ongoing commitment to and respect for human rights. Duke Energy respects international human rights principles, including those identified by the United Nations. Duke Energy prohibits the use of forced labor, child labor and any form of human trafficking.
The company joins many national and global businesses that commit to mitigating human rights issues through educating employees about how to identify and report possible human rights abuses like human trafficking.
Duke Energy developed the Energy Workers Against Human Trafficking training course. The course is being deployed among field workers, who through their extensive work throughout our communities, may observe signs of human trafficking. In the training, workers learn how to recognize the signs of human trafficking and report what they see to the appropriate authorities.
In addition, Duke Energy is committed to serving as a strong community partner, actively working to help ensure the communities we operate in are valued and respected and treated equitably and fairly. The company will engage intentionally and proactively with stakeholders by listening, seeking feedback and responding to questions and concerns when working on infrastructure projects.
Duke Energy embraces environmental justice principles that advance the fair treatment and ensure meaningful involvement of the communities we serve, regardless of race, color, national origin, or income. These principles guide how we conduct business in our communities; whether that is siting or building a new facility or developing technologies and infrastructure, we do so with the community in mind.
As the company transitions to cleaner energy, we recognize the importance of our power plants to both the communities and the local workforce. As we retire coal plants, we will strive – as we have done in the past – to transition impacted employees to new opportunities and will work to match communities with appropriate resources. (See related article “Developing Inside Talent.”)
This will continue to be an important conversation as Duke Energy – along with all stakeholders – strive for a cleaner energy future for all.