March 15, 2013
Aboriginal communities throughout Canada have continuously struggled to battle the social and economic adversity imparted on them by government and industry in this country. Time and time again the rights and considerations of First Nations and Métis communities have been trumped by seemingly more equitable opportunities. There appears to be a misconception plaguing industry proponents that Aboriginal communities are vigorously opposed to exploration and mining initiatives; which has fostered the strained relationship we have grown accustomed to without questioning the origin or validity of such assumptions. Aboriginal communities are instead largely opposed to the feeling of irrelevancy in projects that have the potential to affect their livelihood in negative ways.
The duty to consult has been inundated with heaves and sighs by industry since its inception in 2009 because it prolongs the permitting process; however what industry continuously fails to recognize is that cutting corners with the duty to consult will inevitably result in delays longer than the amount of time it would take to appropriately and adequately consult with communities at the onset of a proposed project.
The element that appears to be stumping both industry and government is what "appropriate and adequate" consultation entails. That is where 2Badgers joins the ballgame. A pinch hitter with both industry and government experience, and a First Nations background, CEO and Senior Consultant Dion Arnouse is the go-to liaison to bridge that gap.
Dion served as a First Nations Community Liaison for the Federal Government for 23 years until his retirement in 2011, when he decided to pursue another dream of becoming a small business owner, resulting in two very unique companies. The first one in partnership with his wife Gloria; a Kitchen and Bath design company (Harmony Custom Kitchens and Bath Design ltd.), and the other, 2Badgers Consulting Inc., an Aboriginal Consulting Company, both proudly First Nations owned and operated.
Raised in a First Nations community in Salmon Arm, BC, Dion spent much of his childhood with his grandmother who taught him the traditional ways of his elders and his people. Inspired also by his mother who retired after a 35 year nursing career, Dion speaks with a wealth of knowledge behind him. Growing up amongst strong female influences pushed him to defy the inevitable stereotypes proliferated within First Nations communities.
Throughout his teen years he was involved with many Aboriginal Youth programs and spent time in the Forest and Pipeline Industry prior to being called to the Federal Government as an Aboriginal Liaison. Dion spent the majority of his career providing a proactive service to many First Nations communities and was responsible for implementing a multitude of health and safety initiatives in collaboration with the bands. It is with this experience and great sense of gratitude to his own family and community that he now spends his time advocating for the betterment of First Nations communities throughout Western Canada so that more Aboriginal youth have the opportunity and capacity to realize their dreams.
The 2Badgers team's passion lies in facilitating partnerships between Industry and First Nations communities with a unique focus on Community Engagement strategies and offering strategic advice and guidance on capacity building initiatives. We not only assist Industry with engaging Aboriginal communities in a respectful manner, we also assist many communities with their socio-economic goals.
Through our dedication, extensive industry knowledge, and real time understanding of issues affecting our clients and their partners, our goal at 2Badgers is to act as a trusted extension of their business. We are passionate about achieving better results for our clients—results that go beyond the financial and are uniquely tailored, pragmatic, holistic, and enduring. We aim to foster mutually beneficial partnerships between Industry and First Nations that will strengthen both the communities and the economy, while cultivating a new set of business practices centred upon social impact and corporate responsibility.
2Badgers Consulting has formed strategic partnerships with numerous Industry proponents committed to engaging in business relationships from a position of transparency, respect, and trust. In order to ensure accountability to the clients our company serves, industry partners must make a best effort to meet the following criteria:
Our vision is to assist in the creation of successful, long-term sustainable relationships between the Aboriginal Peoples of Canada and the Industry sector, resulting in independent, economically sound, and socially and environmentally responsible businesses and communities. With broad and evolving service offerings and a commitment to long term development of our employees, 2Badgers offers a one of a kind approach to industry consulting with diversity of knowledge, ideas, capabilities, and staff.
Our customized approach delves deep into the dynamics of companies. This ensures that our clients achieve sustainable competitive advantage, build more accountable organizations, and secure lasting results.
With a rapidly changing political climate, the need for meaningful engagement and consultation with First Nations is at an all time high. First Nations no longer represent simply stakeholders in industrial enterprises, but rather invaluable partners. 2Badgers excels at fostering meaningful relationships between industry and First Nations communities that satisfy not only the legislative duty to consult but also the social responsibility to assess risk and minimize impact.
Integrity, transparency, respect for the individual and community, and leaving a positive mark on society represent just some of our core values. Our commitment to both our clients’ success and our own standards is what sets 2Badgers apart. At 2Badgers value creation requires that our insight and expertise deliver awareness and positive change to our clients, while still ensuring their business remains profitable. We are committed to continuous cultural and economic awareness so that we may provide our clients with the most current information and strategies to mitigate their challenges.
We take pride in being pioneers in combining frontline community engagement with strong research and analytical skills. Our programs and services are current and cutting edge to meet the changing needs and demands within the Industry/ First Nations realm. Both our people and services are flexible to fit the unique needs of each client both locally and globally. By leveraging the power of global insight, relationships, collaboration, and a First Nations heritage we deliver exceptional service to clients wherever they do business.