Aboriginal/Industry Engagement: A First Nations Consultant's Perspective

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Aboriginal/Industry Engagement: A First Nations Consultant's Perspective is a presentation delivered by Dion Arnouse at the Expanding Our Knowledge Conference on April 15, 2013. …

Aboriginal/Industry Engagement: A First Nations Consultant's Perspective is a presentation delivered by Dion Arnouse at the Expanding Our Knowledge Conference on April 15, 2013.

Dion Arnouse is the founding CEO of 2Badgers Consulting Inc., an Aboriginal owned and operated consulting company. Prior to founding his company, he served as a member of the RCMP for 22 years where he spent the majority of his career implementing proactive initiatives in First Nations communities. In this capacity, Dion was responsible for enacting a multitude of health and safety initiatives in collaboration with the bands. It is with this experience, and great sense of gratitude to his own family and community, that he now spends his time advocating for the betterment of First Nations communities throughout Western Canada so that more Aboriginal youth have the opportunity and capacity to realize their dreams. Dion was born and raised in the Secwepemc (Shuswap) territory and is a proud member of the Little Shuswap Indian Band.

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  • Cultural awareness is not just a checkmark in the box, you must genuine in your efforts to learn and understand , you must approached the opportunity with an open heart and an open mind if you want to establish a working relationship and gain community acceptance.Companies and contactors approaching us, Chiefs calls us……..services that we can trustCarefully researchedDevelopmental opportunitiesMentor from quality service providersNot just labor positions but management and up to building and managing own businessDevelop leadership skillsMore more importantly building relationships and building sense of communities through working togetherElude to Bob training and the success and impact on people, even on myself


  • 2. BACKGROUND AND EXPERIENCE“Our generational connection is to the land”
  • 3. “Aboriginal/IndustryEngagement: A First NationsConsultant’s Perspective”
  • 4. CONFLICT MEDIATION Provincial Community Relations Liaison Develop Proactive Strategies Research, Analyze and Understand Learning from lessons of the past
  • 5. TRENDSWorst Practices Best PracticesAPPROVEDDENIED
  • 6. WORST PRACTICESA C T I O N S• No engagement strategy• Not listening• Failing to consult early• Lack of cross-cultural awareness• No due diligence research• Failure to follow protocols• Approaching with a ME rather thanWE attitude• Failing to bring CEO/ decisionmaker to the tableR E S U L T S• Company-Community conflict• Mediation vs. litigation• Project stoppage or closure• Loss of reputation• Loss of economic opportunities• Financial loss• LOSS OF RELATIONSHIP
  • 7. BEST PRACTICESA C T I O N S• Engagement strategy• Communications strategy• Defined project parameters & objectives• Consult early and often• Cultural awareness education• Due diligence research• Following protocols• Think “Corporate Social Responsibility”R E S U L T S• Long-term relationshipsbased on trust andrespect• Social license tooperate• Understanding ofculture• Economic benefits toboth sides
  • 8. WHY ENGAGE Meaningful engagement is long term and involved, itoffers continuity with the relationship An opportunity to build proactive relationships andpartnerships Essential to obtaining your social license Opens the doors to understanding one another’s interests Creates a collaborative venue for problem solving Builds on a broader sense of community
  • 9. “THE COST OF CONFLICT WITH LOCAL COMMUNITIESIN THE EXTRACTIVE INDUSTRY”“The extractive Industry has the potential to significantlytransform environments, communities and economies. Attimes, such transformation may manifest in conflicts ordisputes between a resource company and localcommunities, or even a complete breakdown of thecompanys social license to operate”Rachel Davis, Harvard University &Daniel M. Franks, University ofQueensland Australia
  • 11. 2BADGERS OBJECTIVESMISSIONTo foster mutually beneficialpartnerships between Industry andFirst Nations that will strengthenboth the communities and theeconomy, while cultivating a newset of business practices centredupon social impact and corporateresponsibility.VISIONTo assist in the creation of successful,long-term sustainable relationshipsbetween the Aboriginal Peoples ofCanada and the Industry sector,resulting in independent, economicallysound, and socially andenvironmentally responsiblebusinesses and communities.VALUESIntegrity, transparency, respect for the individual andcommunity. At 2 Badgers value creation requires that ourinsight and expertise deliver awareness and positivechange to our clients, while still ensuring their businessremains profitable.
  • 12. CSR/CAPACITY BUILDING INITIATIVES Socio-economic initiatives Jobs Cultural and traditional preservation Training/Education Procurement Environmental protection Business partnerships / Joint Ventures Remote training programs Royalties Infrastructure development Capacity building Community wellness initiatives Assistance with employment challenges,retention, recruiting and transition Mitigating risk & conflict Financial management
  • 13. STRATEGIC ALLIANCE INITIATIVE Willingness to engage in cultural awareness training Open to offering apprenticeship, mentorship, and trainingopportunities at all levels Commitment to offering employment opportunities for Aboriginalpeoples where possible Respect for the environment Commitment to the health and safety of the employees andcommunity Engaging in business partnerships from a position of transparency,respect and trust
  • 14. SO, AT THE END OF THE DAY...Success with the Duty to Consult is a relative term, holding avastly different significance for different people andcommunities , however it can be agreed that with regard toIndustry/First Nations relations, success means: sustainableeconomic benefit, mutual respect and confidence that therelationship will evolve to produce new solutions to newproblems together.
  • 15. Only when the last tree has diedand the last river has beenpoisoned
and the last fish has beencaught
will we realize….we cannoteat money.Cree Indian Expression