Socio-economic strategy for the Giant Mine: plain language summary

The Giant Mine Remediation Project is more than a major construction undertaking. Its main goal is to protect the environment and human health and safety. It is also important that local Northern and Indigenous peoples and businesses benefit from it. To achieve this, the project team has a strategy that guides how it will deliver social and economic benefits.

Having a socio-economic strategy for the project is important

The project has the potential to provide socio-economic benefits within the Northwest Territories (NWT), a region which has current economic and labour resource challenges. These include:

The project team is working to support the NWT through employment and capacity-building in the territory. The socio-economic strategy guides how the project identifies and delivers socio-economic benefits by:

The project team will continue to review and adjust the strategy to ensure it is working.

The strategy will help northerners and Indigenous peoples benefit from the project

The strategy's overall aim is to benefit northern and Indigenous peoples as much as possible within the federal policies and rules the project has to comply with. To do this, the strategy outlines 3 different types of activities it needs to do:

Most of the project benefits will come when remediation work starts. In this phase, there will be more opportunities for capacity-building, training, jobs, and business growth. Both direct and indirect benefits may result from the project. Direct benefits include:

The project could also create indirect benefits. These are benefits that are not necessarily from people working on the project or buying things for it. Instead, the people doing the work earn money and generate taxes. They also spend locally while working on the project.

Access to employment and procurement opportunities

An important part of the strategy is making sure a wide range of local businesses have opportunities to bid on work. Procurement is an important tool for Indigenous and Northern businesses to gain experience, develop capacity, and form partnerships to compete for opportunities. The project is working with the main construction manager, Parsons Inc., to package the work in ways that reflect local capacity and resources. This will help ensure Northern and Indigenous businesses can participate in procurement processes. The project is also including specific requirements, tools, and approaches for the main construction manager to use as part of the procurement process.

Support for capacity and skills-development

A high proportion of workers in the NWT are out-of-territory commuters. Supporting local capacity and skills-development is a project priority. Part of the strategy is to look at how the project can help build a skilled NWT workforce. The project will need to work closely with different government departments, agencies, and organizations with existing capacity-building programs. As the team identifies the types of skills and experience needed for the project, it will work with these partners who deliver programs for capacity-building. This way, people will know about the programs to help them build skills and capacity and how to access them. The project will also make sure Northern and Indigenous peoples and businesses have enough time to develop the needed skills and resources before the work starts.

Anticipating, monitoring and reducing negative impacts

Socio-economic impacts on communities from large projects depend on the nature of the project and on community resilience. Many communities have faced long-term challenges made worse from activities and income from new projects. The team knows negative social impacts might result from changes the project brings to the region. The strategy looks at the negative aspects of mining projects to get an idea of the kinds of impacts this project might cause, such as:

When the project plan is farther along and more detailed, the team will know more about what kinds of impacts might come from the project. The strategy includes identifying potential negative impacts during this planning stage. That way, plans will include ways to reduce these impacts.

How the project will deal with barriers to carrying out the strategy

The team has identified barriers that could limit the project's ability to achieve socio-economic outcomes. These include:

The strategy identifies different actions the project can take to address these barriers. Some of the things the project team is looking at doing are to:

The project also receives advice from different groups, to help it achieve its socio-economic goals. These groups include the:

The project may also create an Indigenous Benefits Plan monitoring and advisory committee to monitor how the main construction manager's Indigenous Benefits Plan is being carried out and provide advice on how to address barriers and improve performance. This work might also be done by the socio-economic advisory body instead of a separate committee.

Measuring the strategy's success

To help measure how successful the strategy is, the project team has developed Key Performance Indicators. The project will measure these in 4 different categories.

Employment

  • Total project employment broken down by full-time and part-time (number of persons, person hours, percentage)
  • Total employment by northerners, Indigenous, and women (number of persons, person hours, percentage)
  • Northern Indigenous women (number of persons, person hours, percentage)
  • Northern Indigenous men (number of persons, person hours, percentage)
  • Northern non-Indigenous women (number of persons, person hours, percentage)
  • Northern non-Indigenous men (number of persons, person hours, percentage)
  • Employment by skill level (number of entry-level,Footnote 1 semi-skilled,Footnote 2 skilled Footnote 3 and professionalFootnote 4
  • Employee's residential status in the NWT (resident or non-resident) (number, percentage)

Training

  • Total training by Northerners, Indigenous and women (number of persons, person hours, percentage)
  • Northern Indigenous women (number of persons, person hours, percentage)
  • Northern Indigenous men (number of persons, person hours, percentage)
  • Northern non-Indigenous women (number of persons, person hours, percentage)
  • Northern non-Indigenous men (number of persons, person hours, percentage)

Procurement

  • Total suppliers and amount spent (number, dollar amount)
  • Total Indigenous suppliers and amount spent (number, dollar amount, percentage)
  • Total Northern suppliers and amount spent (number, dollar amount, percentage)
  • Northern Indigenous suppliers and amount spent (number, dollar amount, percentage)
  • Northern non-Indigenous suppliers and amount spent (number, dollar amount, percentage)
  • Awarding of largest contract(s) (company and dollar amount)

Other

  • Local job fairs, networking sessions, procurement awareness event, and training events attended by project team or Main Construction Manager staff (number of events, location, number of participants)
  • Changes in the process to support Indigenous traditionsFootnote 5 (frequency, description)
  • Modifications to procurement to increase Indigenous participation (description, number)
  • New joint ventures and partnerships (number)
  • New Northern Indigenous and Northern non-Indigenous contractors bidding on work (number)
  • Professional development scholarships (number of scholarships, dollar amount of each, and number filled by priority groups)
  • Northern Indigenous and Northern non-Indigenous apprentices supported (number, percentage out of total apprentices)

The project will:

  • monitor performance against the strategy
  • report on these key performance indicators quarterly and in the project's annual report
  • share results at meetings with partners and stakeholders, where possible

Next steps for the project will also include developing targets based on the key performance indicators and looking at how it can reach or do better than these targets.

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