Developing relationships with Aboriginal Communities/Groups-Energy and Utilities Board

CIM Edmonton 2004
Rob A. Barber, Jacob J. Handel, Doreen Healy,
Abstract This paper shares the experience of the Alberta Energy and Utilities Board (EUB), Field Surveillance Branch over the past few years in building relationships with Aboriginal communities. Our goal is to provide and encourage best practices that may benefit you and your organization and result in strong, mutually beneficial relationships with a focus on Aboriginal communities.

Historical information provides insight that aids in establishing effective working relationships with Aboriginal communities. An important ingredient is appreciation of the perspective of these communities, which is achieved through awareness training. The use of local Aboriginal resource people as part of the training is recommended.

A plan that is supported by management and staff is essential and lays the foundation for successful relationships. However, the plan must be flexible enough to change as circumstances warrant.

The concept of having local people in communities address local issues is essential. This “grass roots” approach, combined with the goal of exceeding a community’s expectations with respect to addressing issues, will go a long way to establish trust and credibility. Measuring the effectiveness of this work is the final building block to complete the picture.
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