Safe Certification Opens Up More Opportunities
First Nations Communities and Partnerships become SAFE CERTIFIED
I have been working closely with First Nations Communities throughout BC with the 5 -Pack Fire Crew submissions. Many of the communities or the General Partnerships are Safe Certified through the BC Forest Safety Council or are working towards it.
What Does Safe Certification Do For You?
Companies or Communities who are Safe Certified have an elevated status as a company that cares about its employees by promoting a safe environment. A company that attracts a workforce with a focus on going to work and coming home at the end of the day.
It also allows you to bid on contracts for most Major Licensee’s, BC Timber Sales and Forests For Tomorrow. I have seen firsthand the successes that follow Safe Certification. When I started working for Anaham Band in 2008, I was asked to look for economic opportunities for the community to get more people to work. I started looking at what was out there for forestry work and although there were lots of contracts to bid on, Anaham wasn’t Safe Certified and therefore not eligible to bid.
The Band had two companies registered as businesses, so I looked at them both and decided to register Klatassine Resources Ltd. Our first big planting job was a direct award through the Forests For Tomorrow program and we received our certification number days before we started. When we got the Certificate in the mail, I framed it and hung it up in the main office to let everyone see. I was starting to see a change in the crews and how they viewed themselves.
Work Opportunities Pour In
I started phoning West Fraser and Tolko looking for opportunities. Once they realized we were Safe Certified, the work started pouring in. We were awarded contracts for Mistletoe Eradication, Beetle Probing, Tree Planting, Grass Seeding deactivated roads, Road construction and Logging Services Contracts. We went from a 3 to 4 truckload/day logging company to well over 12 truckloads/day. The workers were happy to have safety meetings and talk about their safety concerns.
We bid on contracts along with other companies, sometimes successfully sometimes not, but regardless of the outcome at least we were eligible to bid!
I started to put decals on our company vehicles and proudly displayed the Safe Certified Logo on. I enjoyed watching our vehicles run around town. The other nearby First Nations communities have jumped on board and are getting Safe Certified as well.
An effective safety program improves your business.