As part of AltaGas’ growth over the past two decades, our company has been privileged to develop relationships with the Indigenous communities within whose traditional territories our projects and operations are located. AltaGas strives to conduct development activity in an environmentally, ecologically, socially, culturally and economically sustainable manner for the benefit of future generations, and values collaboration with Indigenous peoples in determining how this may be achieved in conjunction with our projects.
AltaGas works to build long-term collaborative relationships that are based on trust, the willingness to listen and learn, and the desire to involve Indigenous peoples meaningfully in every phase of our developments. Our approach is underscored by principles that help to enable strong relationships, including:
- Open and honest communication throughout all aspects of a project.
- A willingness to integrate Indigenous teachings and knowledge to help inform AltaGas’ environmental actions and community solutions as part of the project planning and development.
- A desire to engage with as many community members as possible, and
- A desire to educate, train and build capacity so that Indigenous peoples may participate in the planning, construction and operations of a project.
AltaGas is proud of the relationships it has built in the different areas it operates and looks to the future with a promise of partnerships, projects and ventures.
AltaGas is committed to building long term, mutually beneficial working relationships with Aboriginal and Native American peoples while recognizing and respecting individual values and traditions. AltaGas is committed to developing these relationships on a foundation of respect for the languages, customs, and political, social and cultural institutions of Aboriginal peoples.
Our Aboriginal and Native American Relations Policy directs how we develop mutually beneficial relations with Aboriginal communities affected by our operations. It provides direction and a means to clarify how the company will interact with Aboriginal communities. It also sets standards for employees and contractors to interact with aboriginal representatives, and ensures a consistent approach for all projects. AltaGas' policy identifies guiding principles for Aboriginal Relations in order to achieve these goals.These guiding principles include:
- Respect for legal rights, cultural values and traditional land use
- Recognition of the distinct needs of different Aboriginals with unique languages, cultures, priorities and protocols and the need to research project-specific issues
- Acknowledgment that all communities are different. A distinct community specific approach will need to be adopted for consultation and accommodation based on the impact of each Project.
- Open dialogue through communication and consultation.
- AltaGas employee education and training on Aboriginal Relations Policy
- Community development and partnerships
- Evaluating progress and measuring success
This policy promotes the understanding of, and sensitivity to, Aboriginals and Native Americans and the issues important to them based on the concerns they raise.
AltaGas works with First Nations
First Nations Contractor Program
AltaGas has a specialized program to help First Nation businesses to work through our procurement system and become approved suppliers.
New Graduate Program
In 2011, AltaGas committed to a 10-year program to offer one new Tahltan post-secondary graduate per year with the opportunity to participate in the New Graduate Development Program. The two-year program provides new graduates with a challenging work experience that helps them move into successful careers at AltaGas. Graduates are paired with a mentor and experience different areas of AltaGas’ business through six-month rotations.
First Nations Cultural Awareness Program
Working Effectively with Aboriginal Peoples became mandatory First Nations awareness training for all staff in 2011. This program is designed to develop a broad based awareness and equip staff so that they can innovatively and collaboratively handle issues that arise.
AltaGas First Nations Development Fund
Nominated for a 2014 Social Finance Award this trailblazing partnership between AltaGas and Indian Business Corporation is the first investment made by a resource company into an Aboriginal Finance Both IBC and AltaGas believe there is significant potential for resource-based companies to make a positive impact in the local communities in which they work through investments like this. The fund provides access to capital for Aboriginal entrepreneurs in Canada.