Indigenous Rights and Engagement
At Goldcorp, our strategy is to seek and encourage partnerships with all local communities. Five of our operations (Red Lake, Musselwhite, Porcupine, Marlin and Éléonore) are in or adjacent to Indigenous Peoples’ territories.
We are committed to meeting or exceeding mandatory consultation requirements and working in collaboration with all stakeholders who have an interest in our projects and operations. In particular, we collaborate with stakeholders and assist in the creation of employment and business opportunities for local Indigenous communities, with sensitivity and support for their social and cultural practices.
As a member of the International Council on Mining and Metals (ICMM), we support the ICMM Position Statement on Mining and Indigenous Peoples, which was updated in 2013 and came into effect in 2015. The Position Statement outlines the ICMM’s view of Free, Prior, Informed Consent (FPIC) and commits member companies to putting this into practice.
Effective engagement with Indigenous groups can create employment and business opportunities for communities, encourage economic independence and entrepreneurship, and ensure operations are sensitive to local cultural and social practices. Many of our sites have established formal agreements with Indigenous groups near to our sites. These agreements often have different names (Collaboration Agreements, Cooperation Agreements, Resource Development Agreements, etc.) and vary by size and scope, but all of them establish foundational elements for collaborative partnerships.
While each agreement is a unique reflection of the partners involved, we strongly believe that together these agreements demonstrate a company-wide commitment to working transparently and in good faith to build long-term relationships with partners in the communities.
In 2015, Goldcorp and the Cree Nation of Wemindji, the Grand Council of the Crees (Eeyou Istchee) and the Cree Nation Government publicly disclosed the Opinagow Collaboration Agreement (excluding financial terms). The disclosure of the agreement was an important step of trust and transparency between us and our partners. The Opinagow Collaboration Agreement provides an example to the mining industry on the ways Aboriginal communities and mining companies can successfully work together to make sustainable commitments to one another for the mutually beneficial and successful development, operation and reclamation of a project.
In Latin America, our Marlin mine worked extensively with local community development councils (known as COCODES in Spanish). These councils are formally appointed by each of the communities near our mine, and decide, prioritize and implement projects of significance in accordance to each community’s needs and priorities. This approach highlights the importance of including culturally and contextually appropriate decision-making processes that take into consideration the traditions and social practices of the areas where we operate.
Indigenous Groups and Formal Agreements at Our Operations
|Goldcorp operations in or adjacent to Indigenous Peoples’ territories||Name of Indigenous group||Formal agreements in place
with Indigenous groups
|Red Lake Gold Mines||Lac Seul First Nation||Yes||August 2013|
|Wabauskang First Nation||Yes||January 2015|
|Porcupine Gold Mines (PGM)||Mattagami First Nation||Yes||November 2014|
|Wahgoshig First Nation|
|Matachewan First Nation|
|Flying Post First Nation|
|Éléonore||The Grand Council of the Crees Eeyou Istchee||Yes||February 2011|
|Cree Nation Government|
|Cree Nation of Wemindji|
|Musselwhite||Mishkeegogamang Ojibway First Nation||Yes||January 2014|
|North Caribou Lake First Nation||Yes||1996, renewed 2001|
|Cat Lake First Nation|
|Kingfisher Lake First Nation|
|Wunnumin Lake First Nation|
|Shibogama First Nations Council|
|Windigo First Nations Council|
Indigenous Business Development
The presence of our mining activities both attracts and creates business opportunities in the regions in which we operate. We preferentially engage and support local services at each of our operations, and work closely with local partners to help grow firms and increase their capacity. Our long-standing ties and relationships with Indigenous groups have provided further opportunities for business development growth. The following are examples of some of our Canadian Indigenous business partners:
- Wemindji Laundry Inc. – Part of Éléonore’s business partnership with the Cree, Wemindji Laundry Inc. provides laundry service to the mine and coin-operated machines and services for community members. Wemindji Laundry is 100% Cree-owned and has hired 100% of its personnel from the Wemindji community.
- Makoose Wood Innovations – Makoose Wood Innovations is a resource-based company involved in logging, sawing and manufacturing. Based out of Wabauskang First Nation, just south of Red Lake, the company is 100% First Nations–owned and provides full-time positions to community members. Makoose has established a diamond drill core box fabrication business.
- Windigo Catering – Windigo is a successful start-up venture originally funded by Musselwhite which, in 2006, spun off as a for-profit organization with new growth extending beyond the mine. Approximately 80% of the staff is of Indigenous descent, largely composed of First Nations community members.
- Lac Seul Small Business Equity Fund – Incorporated within the Obishikokaang Collaboration Agreement between Red Lake Gold Mines and Lac Seul First Nation, funding was put forward by Goldcorp to support local entrepreneurs from the Lac Seul community through the Lac Seul Small Business Equity Fund. The first fund application by the First Nation community saw a successful Tim Hortons built in Sioux Lookout, a few hours south of Red Lake.