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Indigenous Culture and Mining: Culture Change: A Bottom-up Approach

June 21, 2021 @ 11:00 pm

On Canada’s National Indigenous People’s Day (the 21st of June), the Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum’s Diversity and Inclusion Advisory Committee will have a webinar from 23:00 until midnight. A summary:

Fitting a square peg into a round hole is never an easy task. So why are we as Indigenous people asked to give up a part of ourselves to fit into this corporate culture? Working in the mining industry shouldn’t be at the cost of changing cultural nuances or by losing language. Unfortunately, corporate culture has an expectation for Indigenous people to bend and change their way of doing things in order to meet their terms of success. With the majority of First Nations people in these companies in entry-level positions, it seems changing the majority for the comfort of a few may not be the best way to develop a culture of acceptance and prosperity. The challenges and microaggressions exist and awareness is necessary to transform the corporate culture to one that celebrates the cultures of others. An industry that embraces what Indigenous people can offer both professionally and culturally is critical in this time of reconciliation. Not only can employment within the mining industry help filter money back into our communities and help us prosper, it can help us share our experiences, our values, and our culture so it can be celebrated by all in partnership for a better relationships as the mining industry expands.

Kari Lentowicz