COMPREHENSIVE INDIGENOUS INCLUSION POLICY
I. STATEMENT OF PURPOSES
A. Special Electronics & Designs Inc. (“SED Inc.”) is dedicated to growing and promoting exemplary relationships with Indigenous people, businesses and communities throughout Canada.
B. SED Inc. will work with Indigenous communities to promote economic development through the identification of opportunities that offer Indigenous communities and businesses the ability to participate in the procurement of goods and services in support of SED Inc.’s operational and project requirements.
C. SED Inc. recognizes that Indigenous people are underrepresented in its workforce. SED Inc. equally recognizes the importance of diverse ethnic groups and their role/importance in a representative workforce. However, Indigenous people are significantly underrepresented. Focused strategies are needed to build a culturally safe environment and representative workforce including cultural competencies, recruitment, retention, education, partnerships and communication. These strategies focus on, but are not limited to Indigenous people.
D. The Company wants to employ Indigenous people as well as conduct business with Indigenous entrepreneurs and Indigenous development corporations. SED Inc. wants to enter into mutually beneficial joint ventures and partnerships as well as other agreements and understandings which bring value to the SED Inc.’s well as to Indigenous people, businesses and communities.
E. SED Inc. aspires to be an “Employer of Choice” with Indigenous people. The Company is dedicated to creating a workplace which is inclusive and honouring of Indigenous Peoples’ history, culture and heritage.
SED Inc. will adhere to the following principles in the implementation of this Comprehensive Indigenous Inclusion Policy:
1. Respect and transparency are important in SED Inc.’s discussions and transactions with Indigenous people, businesses and communities;
2. Trust is built and earned and stands as the foundation of any good relationship;
3. Business relationships and transactions must be fair and equitable for all parties;
4. SED Inc. will act with good will and intent in all of its Indigenous initiatives;
5. The Company will seek to be a model for exemplary Indigenous relations;
6. Indigenous employment practices will be characterized by fairness, reasonableness, and an absence of bias and harassment; and
7. The Company embraces diversity and inclusion as vital components of a successful, engaging and productive workplace.
This policy applies to all employees, divisions and business units within SED Inc. in Canada as well as to Indigenous people, businesses and communities seeking to work with or grow relationships with the Company.
A. Indigenous: In this policy, ‘Indigenous’ refers to First Nations, Métis and Inuit Peoples.
B. Indigenous Business:
- A business that is at least 51% Indigenous owned and controlled; or
- A business that has 6 or more full-time Indigenous staff members and at least one-third of employees are Indigenous.
C. Company: SED Inc. and its affiliates, successors, and assigns.
D. Cultural Competency: a set of congruent behaviors, attitudes and policies that come together in a system, agency or profession that enables that system, agency or profession to achieve cultural diversity and to work effectively in cross-cultural situations.
E. Cultural Safety: exists when an environment is created and respected and where people, customers and workers feel safe, understood and respected to optimize the customer experience.
F. First Nation: includes any of the Indigenous peoples or Indian communities of Canada, especially one formally recognized by the Canadian Government. First Nations include:
- Status (registered) treaty Indians;
- Non-status (unregistered) Indians.
G. Inuit: Indigenous people of the Canadian arctic. The arctic is divided into territories: Nunavut, Yukon and Northwest Territories along with Northern Quebec and Northern Labrador.
H. Joint Venture: can consist of two or more Indigenous businesses, or an Indigenous business and one or more non-Indigenous businesses, provided that in all cases the Indigenous business[es] own and control at least 51% of the joint venture.
I. Métis: descendants of First Nation and European heritage. Métis people are defined under the Métis National Council as a person who self-identifies, who is of historic Métis ancestry and/or belong to a Métis local or is accepted as Métis by the Métis Nation.
J. Partnerships: a relationship involving the sharing of power, work, support, resources and/ or information of others for the achievement of joint goals and/or mutual benefits.
K. Persons with Disabilities: an individual who has a long term or reoccurring physical, mental, sensory, psychiatric or learning impairment and;
- Considers themselves to be disadvantaged in employment by reason of that impairment;
- Believes that an employer or potential employer is likely to consider them to be disadvantaged in employment by reason of that impairment; and
- Includes persons whose functional limitations owing to their impairment have been accommodated in their current job or workplace.
L. Representative Workforce: a workforce where all levels of the organization reflect the diversity of the community served and where individuals who are underrepresented in the workforce have equitable access to employment.
M. Self-identified staff: those who have voluntarily declared that they consider themselves to be in a designated Equity Group as defined by the Ontario Human Rights Commission these equity groups are Indigenous, Visible Minority, Women and Persons with disabilities.
N. Visible Minorities: persons other than Indigenous peoples, who are non-white in color/race regardless of their place of birth.
A. Authority and Accountability:
1. The management of this policy including policy education, monitoring, implementation and amendment is the responsibility of the Company President.
2. SED Inc.’s Executive approves the Comprehensive Indigenous Inclusion Policy for the Company and delegates additional authorities as needed.
3. SED Inc.’s Executive approves any financial resources needed to support this policy.
4. Senior Managers of the Company’s business units are responsible for implementing strategies that assist in meeting the purposes, planning and implementation of this policy.
5. All Managers/Supervisors will foster and promote a workplace environment that is sensitive and supportive of representative workforce activities and initiatives.
6. All Staff will promote, create and maintain a culture of inclusiveness and belonging and respect for diversity and equity. See SED Inc.’s Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging (DEIB) Policy (WI-H014).
7. Non-compliance with this policy will result in an investigation pursuant to the Company’s Zero Tolerance Harassment & Workplace Romance Policy (WI-H010). Repeated non-compliance may result in disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment and/or privileges with SED Inc.
B. Planning and Implementation:
This policy will guide the activities of the Company in helping to achieve the purposes of this Comprehensive Indigenous Inclusion Policy.
1. Indigenous Business Development & Procurement, set forth in Schedule 1.
2. Indigenous Employment & Cultural Safety, set forth in Schedule 2.
3. Communication activities will be undertaken in order to build understanding of this policy and its purposes:
- Externally (general public)
- Stakeholders (e.g., Company subcontractors)
4. The Company may post informational materials supporting indigenous culture and opportunities in Company newsletters and various social media and professional networking platforms for distribution among stakeholders, clients, and customers.
5. The Company may periodically make gifts or donations to Indigenous people, businesses or communities, in alignment with its corporate social responsibility guidelines.
C. Respect and Care:
1. SED Inc. is committed to engaging with Indigenous communities where we have activities. Meaningful engagement and consultation begin with respecting the rights of Indigenous peoples, whose legally recognized lands and traditional territories are within or in close proximity to the areas where we operate.
2. We are inclusive:
- In consultation and engagement activities to ensure the voices of the leadership, elders, youth and community members are heard; and
- In promoting education, employment, community investment and economic development opportunities for Indigenous people.
3. We respect:
- The rights and traditional decision-making of Indigenous people;
- The need for honest and fair dialogue with Indigenous peoples regarding both the impacts of SED Inc.’s operations and our ability to respond to their interests and aspirations; and
- The need to build our social license to operate with Indigenous people.
Schedule 1 – Indigenous Business Development & Procurement
A. SED Inc. promotes open and transparent consultation and communication and strives to build lasting relationships with Indigenous communities and businesses. SED Inc. is committed to ensuring these relationships are based on trust, mutual respect and the achievement of common goals.
B. SED Inc. has dedicated personnel who connect Indigenous companies with SED Inc.’s procurement opportunities and provide advice, information and materials to help Indigenous businesses in the following ways:
1. Assist in identifying procurement and economic development opportunities;
2. Assist in identifying the processes used to procure goods; and
3. Build procurement bidding expertise to assist with the SED Inc.’s bid process.
C. Increasing Indigenous participation in the procurement of goods and services is a key goal of SED Inc. Procurement through direct awards, select tenders and specified Indigenous content in bid documents where appropriate will enable us to realize this goal. To ensure that procurement practices are consistent with our goals, the following criterion is utilized to qualify Indigenous businesses:
1. Sole proprietorships – business must be wholly owned by an Indigenous person;
2. Limited company – business must have at least 51 percent of the equity (including any common or voting shares) owned by one or more Indigenous Businesses or Indigenous People;
3. Partnership or joint ventures – business must have at least 51 percent ownership rights (including any voting rights) directly held by one or more Indigenous Businesses or Indigenous People; and
4. As determined by SED Inc. in its sole discretion from time to time, any other businesses with a substantial amount of ownership rights held by one or more Indigenous businesses or Indigenous people.
D. The Company will undertake the following:
1. Encourage Indigenous business participation in its supply chain;
2. Encourage opportunities for qualified Indigenous businesses to supply goods and services to the Company;
3. Track and monitor purchases from Indigenous businesses;
4. Enter into partnerships with Indigenous groups and organizations with the express purpose of forming an Indigenous joint venture; and
5. Enter into agreements with Indigenous groups, organizations and businesses for the purpose of achieving specific business objectives.
E. Regardless of the practice used for procurement, SED Inc. will always seek competitive market-based costs and will not compromise safety, the environment, quality, or schedule.
Schedule 2 – Indigenous Employment & Cultural Safety
A. SED Inc. recognizes that Indigenous people are underrepresented in its workforce. SED Inc. equally recognizes the importance of diverse ethnic groups and their role/importance in a representative workforce. However, Indigenous people are significantly underrepresented.
B. Focused strategies are needed to build a culturally safe environment and representative workforce including cultural competencies, recruitment, retention, education, partnerships and communication. These strategies focus on, but are not limited to Indigenous people.
C. SED Inc. is committed to building a workforce that is representative of the community served in order to provide quality, client centred experiences to, customers and clients.
1. SED Inc.’s representative workforce strategies focus on, but are not limited to Indigenous peoples.
2. SED Inc. shall ensure an organizational strategy is implemented to build a representative workforce that will:
- Enhance organizational cultural competency;
- Increase self-identified staff;
- Decrease self-identified staff turnover by increasing Indigenous retention rate;
- Enhance internal and external positive cross-cultural relations.
D. SED Inc. will undertake the following:
1. Actively recruit Indigenous people to the Company, seeking applicants from various Indigenous Community Employment & Training Resources such as but not limited to the following:
- Nawash – Economic Development Office
Economic Development Officer
- Saugeen & Nawash – Saugeen Ojibway Nation
Bruce Power Coordinator
- Saugeen – Employment & Training Office
Employment & Training Officer, Jennifer Kewageshig
- Historic Saugeen Métis
Employment and Training
Liaison Phone: 519-483-4000
- Nawash – Economic Development Office
2. Encourage a workplace culture of teamwork and cooperation by providing Indigenous Awareness Training, diversity training, or similar kinds of training;
3. Encourage and foster an inclusive workplace which recognizes Indigenous culture, history and heritage;
4. Implement training programs for the purpose of advancing Indigenous employees in accordance with their experience, interests and qualifications and as business conditions for the Company allow; and
5. Track and monitor Indigenous employment numbers.
E. SED Inc. recognizes the value of diversity in our workplace and strives to promote fairness and equal employment opportunities. The decision to employ or engage an individual is based on merit, the potential, and the ability to carry out the role.