Health and Safety
The basis of our enterprise-wide health and safety program includes life safety rules, fatality prevention standards, visible felt leadership and management systems. Over a number of years, we have also worked to establish enterprise-wide standards aligned with international best practice. We update these standards regularly as part of our commitment to continuous improvement, operational excellence and a stronger safety culture.
Life safety rules are in place to minimize the risk of fatalities by identifying and communicating critical safety rules. These rules were established at all operations and continue to be applied through training and orientation, awareness campaigns and disciplinary measures.
A set of eight fatality prevention standards was developed to systematically eliminate fatal risks arising from common hazards. These include Light Vehicles, Heavy Mobile Equipment, Working at Heights, Hazardous Materials and Confined Spaces, among others. These standards are at various stages of implementation across our operations. This phased approach to implementation is due to the unique challenges of each site.
Our visible felt leadership program is intended to drive leaders at all levels of the organization to be visible in the operations modelling safe behaviours and constructively interacting with the workforce to find the ways in which work can be performed more safely. The workforce should feel each leader’s personal commitment to health and safety and view the leader as a safety coach.
In terms of management systems, we are pursuing a three-pronged approach to address critical mining risks through TSM, align with international best practice through ISO 45001 (occupational health and safety) and ISO 14001 (environmental management) standards, and address risks associated with hazardous materials and pressurized vessels through the implementation of process safety management standards.
We track a series of leading indicators designed to increase safe behaviours, improve performance and strengthen safety culture. These indicators include visible felt leadership interactions, proactive health and safety communications, workplace inspections and training. We also have a significant potential incident standard in place which requires tracking and specific management actions for any workplace incident that, under slightly different circumstances, could have resulted in a fatality.
At the corporate level, assurance on our health and safety programs is conducted through regular executive reviews, peer comparisons, internal audits and independent assessments.
COVID-19 Virus Response
The COVID-19 pandemic that started in early 2020 created unprecedented challenges for society and our business. From the onset of the pandemic, Sherritt focused on implementing measures to ensure the health, safety and wellness of our employees and the communities where we operate.
In early 2020, Sherritt activated an Executive Steering Committee to manage and oversee the company’s response to the COVID-19 outbreak. Additionally, working groups were established to implement site and divisional plans and controls.
Upon the declaration of a COVID-19 pandemic, Sherritt implemented a number of protocols and protective measures at our sites to prevent the further transmission of COVID-19 to our employees and surrounding communities. The actions taken included but were not limited to the following:
- Maintained alignment with Canadian and local public health guidance and the Cuban civil defence pandemic crisis plan;
- Restricted site access to employees supporting essential business operations;
- Enhanced screening at all site entry points;
- Implemented physical distancing measures and increased frequency of deep cleaning and sanitization of surfaces;
- Closed all offices, except for essential tasks, and pivoted to flexible and remote working plans for employees;
- Cancelled all non-essential travel;
- Rescheduled maintenance activities to reduce the number of personnel on site;
- Maintained frequent and transparent communications with employees through town halls, bulletins, newsletters, surveys, leadership blogs and audio messages;
- Implemented measures to support employee physical and mental health, including the expansion of mental health benefits for employees;
- Updated various policies – for example, the flexible work policy and leave policies – to ensure that they remained relevant and applicable to the evolving scenarios;
- Completed a COVID-19 crisis response review so that crisis plans could be improved or developed; and
- Developed and maintained graduated pandemic response plans and business continuity plans.
Sherritt worked closely with national and local health authorities and the Mining Association of Canada to align plans and actions. We continue to monitor and regularly assess risks and take measures to ensure the health and safety of our employees in line with local and national public health guidance.
Across the company, reimbursements were made available for home office equipment purchases. At the Fort Site, hand sanitizing solution was purchased from a local distillery, thus providing some economic support to a local small business. For further information on managing COVID-19 at the Fort Site, see this case study.
The protocols implemented at both OGP and the Moa Nickel Site have been aligned with Cuban civil defence guidelines. At different stages of the pandemic, vulnerable personnel from the sites were sent home as a precaution to protect their health, and management supported the families of employees in isolation with care packages of essential items. These activities, along with other measures, were implemented in compliance with Cuban government restrictions and infectious disease protocols.
Sherritt implemented a number of additional health and safety measures and work processes designed to protect employees, suppliers and other stakeholders at its operations in response to the spread of COVID-19. As a result of the additional measures, there was minimal impact to nickel, cobalt, power and oil production in 2020. The additional measures will remain in effect through the duration of the pandemic.
For more information on the effects of COVID-19 on our operations, finances and more, please see the 2020 Financial Results Report.
Health and Safety Management Systems
At the Fort Site, an ISO 45001 Occupational Health and Safety Management pre-assessment (readiness) audit was conducted to help identify gaps and action items. The site also continued to implement the TSM Safety and Health Protocol, achieving a self-assessed minimum Level A in all elements. The update of a number of health and safety–related policies and standards was conducted to continually improve the Fort Site’s Health and Safety Management System (MS). Additionally, the Fort Site assigned responsible health and safety advisors to specific areas to focus on delivering the Health and Safety MS through field support, in an effort to increase stakeholder engagement and improve safety culture on site. The Fort Site also developed and began implementation of a training program on the Fundamentals of Safety Leadership and celebrated and recognized safe behaviour site-wide.
Implementation of ISO 45001 was delayed at OGP due to COVID-19 restrictions in 2020. Nonetheless, existing procedures and protocols were improved and training courses on safe work procedures and practices were provided to enhance skills and awareness.
At the Moa Nickel Site, progress with ISO 45001 Occupational Health and Safety management system implementation was delayed by COVID-19 restrictions. The site continued to implement the TSM Safety and Health Protocol, achieving a self-assessed minimum Level B in all elements. In addition, the site continued the implementation of actions focused on improving hazard identification and eliminating unsafe conditions within operating plants.
In 2020, Sherritt divisions did not experience any work-related or community fatalities.
All sites continued to implement Sherritt’s fatality prevention standards (FPS) with a focus on heavy and light vehicle upgrades, improved controls on hazardous materials, and improved machine guarding. We continue to focus on building a strong safety culture, including removing or reducing fatal risks at the sites and eliminating unsafe behaviours. Our target in 2021 is to achieve an interdependent safety culture for our employees and contractors and zero harm for our community members in the areas in which we operate, while following public health guidelines to manage COVID-19 and protecting the health and safety of our employees and communities where we operate.
Fatality prevention standard implementation will continue during 2021, with actions such as machine safeguarding improvements, working-at-heights facility and equipment upgrades, the installation of driver and trip monitoring technology in light vehicles, and the deployment of fatigue management measures for heavy mobile equipment operators, among other priorities.
Lost Time and Recordable Incidents
During the year, Sherritt reported five lost time incidents (LTIs), which are recorded when a worker misses at least one shift following a workplace incident, and nine recordable incidents (TRIs), which include incidents resulting in lost time, restricted work, medical treatment beyond first aid, loss of consciousness, or death, across the company. The decrease in TRIs is a considerable improvement from our 2019 performance. It is down from 20 in 2019 to 9 in 2020, despite a slight increase in LTIs, from three in 2019 to five in 2020. This decrease is attributable to the decline in hand injuries in 2020 compared to 2019. Year-over-year across the enterprise, TRIFR decreased by 42% and LTIFR increased by 71%.
All Injury Frequency Rate (AIFR)
Sherritt began to measure an AIFR metric in 2018 in an effort to look at a broader lagging indicator measure. The AIFR measures first aid cases, recordable and lost time injuries as well as fatalities. Sherritt’s AIFR has steadily improved since 2018 and year over year it improved by 42%.
Our overall safety performance in 2020 continued to be peer leading, with an LTIFR (total number of lost time incidents per 200,000 work hours) of 0.12 (compared to 0.07 in 2019) and a TRIFR (total number of recordable injuries per 200,000 work hours) of 0.22 (compared to 0.33 in 2019). This comparison was made using publicly available data from the small to medium-sized natural resource companies peer set. A small portion of these peers calculate their frequency rates per one million work hours. Although this level of performance is peer leading, management remains committed to addressing fatal risks and unsafe behaviours indicated by our key performance indicators.
Lost Time Incident (LTI) Index
Total Recordable Incident (TRI) Index
Significant Potential Incidents
Sherritt records significant potential incidents (SPIs) – defined as actual or near-hit incidents that, under different circumstances, could have reasonably resulted in at least one fatality – in conformance with our standard. There were 18 SPIs reported in 2020, which represents an increase from nine SPIs reported in 2019. The SPIs were investigated to identify the cause(s) of each incident, and actions to prevent recurrence were identified and implemented. The most common types of SPIs in 2020 continued to be related to heavy mobile equipment, process releases, and light vehicles. As a result, we are focusing on efforts to identify, strengthen and implement further critical controls in these areas at all of our operating sites.
We strive to ensure that our activities and business practices avoid unintended or adverse effects on the public. We follow the regulations of our operating jurisdictions, strive to meet the expectations of nearby communities, and regularly engage and collaborate with local stakeholders on health and safety–related risk awareness and emergency preparedness. Through engagement, we work to understand public concerns and safety risks, evaluate steps we can take to reduce risk, help clarify misunderstandings and dispel misinformation, and, where appropriate, collaborate with communities on initiatives that make all of us safer.
To minimize the risks of a catastrophic event impacting a local community, the company embarked on a multi-year program to implement process safety management systems at all sites. These systems ensure that major hazards are identified and controlled, changes are appropriately managed, process and equipment integrity programs are in place, operating procedures are in place, and there is adequate communication and training, among many other elements. Our Cuba joint venture operations are aligning with Cuba’s Resolution 148 for major hazard installations, and the Fort Site is aligning with the Canadian CSA Z767-17 process safety management standard. In early 2021, a consultant was selected at the Fort Site who will assist with implementation.
Another important way we mitigate potential impacts to both communities and our business is through effective emergency preparedness and response planning. At our operating sites, we develop plans that are grounded in scenario/risk assessments to protect the public, the environment and infrastructure in the event of a significant incident. We also implement actions to limit the severity of impacts, should an incident occur.
In Canada, Sherritt is responsible for leading emergency response efforts at its sites, while in Cuba we support our joint venture partners and the government authorities who take the lead in responding to operational emergencies. This case study has more information on the Cuban approach. Whenever possible, we coordinate closely with emergency responders in both preparedness and response activities, and we regularly conduct joint training exercises.
Sherritt’s enterprise-wide Crisis Management Standard is informed by Canadian and international practices, including the Mining Association of Canada’s Towards Sustainable Mining (TSM) Crisis Management and Communications Planning Protocol and the Incident Command System’s (ICS) management approach.
Emergency Response Planning and Training
All operating sites have up-to-date emergency response plans and business continuity plans in place, and all sites conducted some form of crisis/emergency preparedness training in 2020. The sites regularly review emergency response plans and hold training exercises annually (at a minimum) to ensure plans are up to date and response teams are prepared. In 2020, all sites prepared or updated pandemic response plans.
At the Fort Site, a complete evaluation of all aspects of the Incident Management Team and supporting documentation is in progress. The intent is to develop a more robust and efficient emergency management system that focuses on enhanced training opportunities and streamlining response management processes to be all-inclusive.
The Fort Site subscribes to the Incident Command System (ICS) management framework for emergencies and is carrying out a multi-year plan to train and conduct field exercises for the local response team. Additionally, the Fort Site partners with the Northeast Region Community Awareness Emergency Response (NRCAER), a mutual aid emergency response group, to share best practices, reinforce mutual aid provisions, and engage with the public and local industry partners to raise awareness of community safety risks.
In Cuba, multiple training exercises occurred in 2020 at the Moa Nickel Site, as well as at the OGP facilities. In 2020, OGP reviewed and updated the Emergency Hurricane Procedures and the Disaster Reduction Plans.
The Corporate office prepared a credible threat and risk analysis to validate that plans were in place for relevant vulnerabilities. In addition, we are currently in the process of introducing the TSM protocol for Crisis Management and Communications Planning across all divisions.
Post-Incident Community Support
Cuba, as an island nation, is prone to seasonal storm activity. Refer to this case study for more information on how Sherritt has supported local communities in Cuba during past storm events.
Stakeholder Awareness and Collaboration
Our operating sites continue to engage with local communities on risk awareness and emergency response.
The Fort Site participated in key multi-stakeholder forums related to crisis and emergency preparedness. Past initiatives with NRCAER and municipal jurisdictions remain a high priority to further build engagement opportunities towards collective safety for all NRCAER partner organizations. We actively participate as NRCAER Emergency Response Team Members and Management Team members in this mutual aid organization.
Due to strict COVID-19 restrictions, Fire Prevention Week activities had to be cancelled, but engagement with the local community and surrounding industrial partners was facilitated through partnerships with NRCAER, and direct contact with local officials. This allowed for broader information distribution to the region as a whole.
We are committed to safeguarding employees, assets, our reputation and the environment while respecting the rights of the public. We have an enterprise-wide policy that outlines our principles for creating a safe and secure business, including:
- Conducting regular security and human rights risk assessments;
- Entering into agreements with private security service providers;
- Entering into agreements with public security forces;
- Reporting and investigating security-related incidents;
- Applying appropriate use of force;
- Apprehending and transferring suspects to public custody.
Our operating sites employ full-time and contract security personnel. We believe that competence and training are the most important elements of effective security management, and we evaluate all personnel carefully before selecting them for security detail. To ensure our interactions with the public are respectful, we provide values- and expectations-based training, including security and human rights training, to our security personnel.
Sherritt’s Security and Human Rights Standard includes standardized tools for conducting site-level gap analyses. The standard is part of Sherritt’s broader Sustainability Framework Implementation Plan for designing and implementing company-wide minimum standards across sustainability-related functions, including security.
The Fort Site has implemented many of the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights (VPSHRs) requirements. Application in Cuba will take more time and a phased approach, including familiarizing our joint venture partners and the Cuban government with the VPSHRs before determining how best to move forward. MAC member companies that rely upon private or public security forces have committed to implementing a human rights and security approach consistent with the VPSHRs and based on a determination of risk at the mining facilities they control. Furthermore, MAC members with international mining operations report on their implementation annually in MAC’s TSM Progress Report.
Management continues to work on pursuing alignment with the VPSHRs in Cuba with the Empresa de Servicios Especializados de Protección, S.A. (SEPSA). SEPSA is the state-run security service provider that provides security at our joint venture operations. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, Sherritt could not further discussions and socialization of the VPSHRs with its Cuban partners.
Security Incidents and Human Rights
In 2020, there were 25 security incidents, compared to 27 in 2019, with the majority of these incidents relating to minor thefts at OGP. Our operations in Cuba and Canada did not record any significant security incidents involving allegations or claims of human rights abuse in 2020.
In 2020, as part of our responsible sourcing efforts, we reviewed relevant indices that assess conflict and security risks and confirmed that Cuba was at low risk of violent conflict.
At the Fort Site, Sherritt security officers continued working closely with a third-party security service provider through training sessions delivered online. These courses included Active Shooter and Raising Threat Awareness as part of the VPSHR site training requirements. The site trained 100% of its security personnel on the Voluntary Principles. However, only 20% of private security contractors and emergency services personnel received training in 2020 due to COVID-19 restrictions, staff turnover, limited in-person training opportunities, and limitations with instructor availability.
Sherritt reaffirmed contractual agreements between the Fort Site and the security provider to ensure compliance with all corporate requirements. Sherritt’s Fort Site continues to maintain a security licence in the province of Alberta. Engagement with the RCMP Emergency Response Team Commanding Officer has taken place for collaboration on active shooter and other site security threats that may involve RCMP resources. Communication and engagement will continue towards future operational refinement and preparedness for the Fort Site.
The Fort Site continues to remain compliant with the requirements of the VPSHRs and with UNICEF’s Child Rights and Security Checklist. While Canada remains a low-risk jurisdiction for human rights infractions, Sherritt believes the Fort Site has clearly benefitted from the application of the VPSHRs in this context.
For more information on our work on the VPSHRs, please visit Sherritt’s 2020 Annual Update Report to the Voluntary Principles Initiative.
Our business cannot operate and thrive without a dedicated, experienced and engaged workforce. We are committed to listening to and understanding the needs and challenges of our employees; taking action to improve the workplace and employee experience; and supporting employees in reaching their potential. For the purpose of this report, employee relations include employee engagement, talent development, labour rights, and workplace diversity and inclusion.
Effective and regular two-way communication with employees is the foundation of our employee relations programs. Senior managers in the Corporate office and divisions are accountable for implementing plans to address the key needs of our workforce. In previous years, Sherritt conducted an employee survey to evaluate engagement across the business. We continue to explore new approaches for gathering employee feedback on a more frequent basis and will report on our renewed approach in a future Sustainability Report.
Ensuring the right programs are in place to support employee development at all levels is crucial for Sherritt’s long-term success and succession planning. We provide a range of technical, management and leadership training in Canada and Cuba. Whenever possible, we leverage opportunities to bring different groups together to build cross-organizational networks and strengthen our shared values and culture.
Our compensation programs are aligned with Our Purpose and Our Promises, fostering a company-wide culture of accountability and pay-for-performance compensation. All salaried employees are eligible for an annual performance-based short-term incentive award expressed as a percentage of their base salary.
Across our company, we have both unionized and non-unionized workforces. We recognize and encourage the right to engage in free association and collective bargaining. As with all of our relationships, we strive for productive and mutually beneficial outcomes in our discussions with employees and organized labour representatives. When labour grievances do occur, we investigate and work to reach an acceptable solution for all parties concerned. In certain cases, we may opt for third-party arbitration. Once grievances have been resolved, the management team evaluates the issues raised and determines if any process improvements should be made.
We have a workplace discrimination and harassment and violence free workplace policy applicable to all Sherritt directors, officers and employees worldwide, including Sherritt’s subsidiaries and affiliated companies. There are also additional policies on human rights, business ethics, and diversity and inclusion that meet legal requirements and reflect best practices. We are committed to continuous improvement in these areas, with a growing focus on diversity and inclusion.
In Cuba, Sherritt and its joint ventures are required by law to hire all national workers through an employment agency. Incidents of discrimination are handled by this state employment agency. The employment agency involves Sherritt and/or its joint venture partners in discrimination cases, as appropriate. Such involvement has occurred in previous years; however, in 2020 there were no incidents that required the involvement of Sherritt and/or its joint venture partners.
In 2020, Sherritt introduced a new approach to measuring and taking action to improve employee engagement. In prior years, Sherritt performed biannual surveys and action planning. In 2020, Sherritt launched more frequent engagement pulse surveys, which are a series of quarterly surveys to gain input from all Sherritt team members on an ongoing basis. Feedback collected from these surveys provides valuable input and direction for appropriate action plans to improve engagement and enhance the employee experience. The pulse surveys also allow for ongoing measurement of the impact of action plans. We ae encouraged by the increased levels of participation in the surveys.
Another key approach to employee engagement and collecting feedback is through formal leader-once-removed discussions that are regularly held with management across the company. These discussions are intended to gain a deeper understanding of how people are really doing, get feedback and insights to help build stronger trust, improve communication and team performance, and further support our leadership development efforts. Management continues to encourage active employee participation in employee resource groups (ERGs). There are several thriving ERGs, most notably those related to female representation and leadership development.
For the last few years, Sherritt has joined over 450 companies participating in Not Myself Today, a national mental health awareness campaign. Sherritt’s workplace mental health campaign included a series of employee workshops delivered by our Employee and Family Assistance Program (EFAP) provider, Morneau Shepell.
As part of the COVID-19 response, several employee surveys were launched to assess how employees were responding to the challenges of essential work or remote work. These were followed up with the development of action plans to address some of the most pressing needs, such as communications, mental health and flexible work, among others.
Organized Labour, Grievances and Strike Action
At the Fort Site, unionized employees are represented by Unifor Local 530A . Sherritt and Unifor have had an effective partnership for more than 65 years without a labour interruption. In 2020, a new ratified collective agreement was signed for the term April 1, 2020 to March 31, 2022. A summary of changes within the collective agreement was reviewed with leaders of unionized employees. Leadership Fundamentals Training has been deployed to support deeper knowledge and understanding of working within a unionized workforce, including key articles and changes within the current collective agreement.
The Fort Site received 20 grievances in 2020 relating to labour practices, an increase from 18 in 2019. A total of 20 grievances were resolved during the calendar year, including 14 that were filed in previous years. Those that were not resolved are being managed in accordance with the procedures set out in the Collective Agreement. The Fort Site follows the process described in the Collective Agreement and the Labour Relations Act of Alberta to resolve all labour relations grievances.
In Cuba, all organized labour considerations are mandated by the Cuban state, and many of the systems and tools that are common in other jurisdictions, including collective bargaining, are not employed there. As such, factoring in the Fort Site, Sherritt’s employee base is approximately 40% unionized.
In the Oil & Gas Division, a new agreement is under negotiation between Sherritt and Petroempleo, the agency that provides contract labour to the petroleum industry in Cuba.
There were no work stoppages as a result of labour unrest in 2020.
Workplace Diversity and Inclusion
With the goal of improving diversity at all levels of the company and ensuring a culture of inclusion, Sherritt launched a five-year diversity and inclusion (D&I) global framework in 2019. The company is making a concerted effort to cultivate and foster an inclusive, respectful and diverse workplace to ensure all employees have a positive experience and to effectively support attraction and retention.
Although the initial focus of our D&I strategy was on gender, the events of 2020 surrounding the death of George Floyd and the issue of systemic racism have highlighted the need for us to re-evaluate our strategy to ensure we are acknowledging and addressing any systemic issues that impede our desire to be an inclusive and diverse workplace.
In 2020, Sherritt successfully completed 85% of the objectives set out in year 1 of the five-year framework, which were focused on building the foundation for our drive towards a more inclusive, diverse and respectful workplace. Additionally, Sherritt was able to get started on other initiatives that were originally planned for years 2 to 5 of the framework, achieving overall progress on 29% of the five-year framework.
The Sherritt Board oversees the deployment of the D&I strategy. Accountabilities for delivering on the framework rest with the senior leadership team and are executed through the Global D&I Steering Committee and the D&I committees at each location.
Currently, Sherritt’s workforce is 19% female, showing a slight increase from 2019. At our Canadian locations (Fort Saskatchewan, Calgary and Toronto), our workforce is 20% female. In Cuba, the main workforce is contracted by the state and Sherritt is not involved in hiring decisions. The management team of the Cuban side of the Moa Nickel Site is currently 40% women. Although Sherritt does not have oversight in hiring, we are benefitting from Cuba’s strong record in gender diversity.
Although our overall gender diversity percentage aligns with the mining sector average of 16%, we remain committed to building a highly inclusive culture in order to attract and retain a diverse workforce.
Sherritt started an ongoing revision of human resources (HR) processes, policies and procedures to better support the attraction, retention and promotion of women in the organization. In 2020, an audit of gender-inclusive signage, facilities, and personal protective equipment (PPE) was completed, and actions are ongoing. For example, women’s PPE was sourced at the Fort Site and is now available.
In 2020, the Fort Site employees established leadHERS, Sherritt’s first employee resource group (ERG). The mission of leadHERS is to cultivate an inclusive environment that supports and encourages women through opportunity, collaboration and advocacy. Refer to this case study for more information on the leadHERS ERG.
Sherritt has joined both the 30% Club Canada, whose goal is to ensure that at least 30% of board seats in the country are held by women by 2022, and Catalyst Canada. As a signatory of the Catalyst Accord 2022, Sherritt pledges to help increase the average percentage of women on boards and women in executive positions in corporate Canada to 30% or more by 2022. At the end of 2020, Sherritt’s Board was composed of 29% female directors, compared to an industry average for mining of 16% female directors, per Osler’s 2020 Report on Diversity Disclosure Practices.
As part of our commitment to diversity and inclusion, Sherritt signed the BlackNorth Initiative Pledge in 2020. The Pledge acknowledges the existence of anti-Black systemic racism and aims to end anti-Black systemic racism. The Pledge was launched in July 2020 and, to date, over 450 organizations of all sizes, industries and mandates have signed it, taking a strong stand in the pursuit of equity, fairness, social justice and systemic change. Sherritt is working directly with the BlackNorth Initiative executive team to identify opportunities for Sherritt to participate in efforts to end anti-Black systemic racism.
1Includes employees from the Fort Site, Commercial and Technologies, Calgary OGP and the Corporate office.
2Includes employees from the office in Havana, Sherritt and GNC employees at the Moa Nickel Site, as well as employees of the entities that make up the OGP businesses (including Energas).
3“Other” includes our Bahamian marketing office, which services the Moa Joint Venture, and OGP Spain.
4Temporary employees include consultants and positions currently filled by contractors.
|Employee average age||46||53|
|Women in workforce (%)3||20%||9%|
|Women in management (%)||18%||<1%|
Note: Sherritt does not currently define or track employee ethnicities and therefore has not included these metrics.
1Includes employees from the Fort Site and the Corporate office.
2Includes employees from the Moa Nickel and OGP sites.
3Includes Sherritt employees, consultants and Cuban local national employees.
In 2018, Sherritt’s Fort Site engaged in a research study to “improve workplace culture in Alberta science, engineering, trades and technology companies by decreasing implicit bias and stereotypical threat”, facilitated by the Canadian Centre for Women in Science, Engineering, Trades and Technology (WinSETT). This work continued through 2020, with Sherritt’s Fort Site being one of three industry partners participating in this research. The program involves the assessment of workplace culture and a review of formal policies with the intention that the results will help Sherritt with its diversity and inclusion strategy and the industry more broadly. The project is funded by the Status of Women Canada – Western Region with in-kind contributions from participating companies and not-for-profit organizations.
During 2020, six incidents of discrimination were reported by employees at the Fort Site, compared to zero reported in 2019. The cases reported in 2020 represent files investigated internally or externally that resulted in confirmed discrimination (inclusive of harassment and bullying). All files have been resolved with the exception of one that is currently going through the grievance procedure. This is something Sherritt takes extremely seriously. Each incident has been thoroughly investigated and addressed with follow-up action, including training and, if necessary, termination of offenders. It is Sherritt’s goal to create a diverse and inclusive workplace where issues are readily reported and appropriately addressed with zero tolerance.
The Fort Site updated its Harassment and Violence Free Workplace Policy in 2020. In 2021, the Fort Site will be including the Unifor Union in the training content review, as well as developing a joint communication with Unifor regarding an Inclusive and Respectful Workplace. The Fort Site is developing a plan to determine the frequency for conducting the Inclusive and Respectful Workplace training and to increase the frequency for review and sign-off of the Harassment and Violence Free Workplace Policy beyond “at hire” for all employees.
Respect in the Workplace training has been provided to all OGP employees and contractors. In 2020, there were no incidents that required the involvement of Sherritt and/or its joint venture partners.
“Sherritt’s support and commitment to signing the BlackNorth Pledge when it was released in 2020, along with now over 450 Canadian companies, has been critical to addressing anti-Black systemic barriers negatively affecting the lives of Black Canadians. Additionally, Sherritt was a Bronze Sponsor of the BlackNorth Talks Series aimed at celebrating Black History Month and educating attendees on the systemic challenges faced by Black Canadians, thus further supporting the promotion of this initiative. Support from organizations like Sherritt will ensure that the BlackNorth Initiative continues gaining momentum, acknowledging the existence of racial inequalities and achieving real tangible actions towards more equitable opportunities for Black Canadians and other people of colour.”
– Dahabo Ahmed-Omer, Executive Director, BlackNorth Initiative