"In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends."
– Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King
VANCOUVER, BC, Feb. 22, 2021 /PRNewswire/ - Recent, violent racial incidents, captured and amplified by social media, have paved the way for conversations on pressing social issues around discrimination. As a mineral exploration company built on a foundation of meeting the highest standards of fairness and ethical behaviour — and as 2021 unfolds with a sense of hope and recovery after a turbulent year - Tectonic Metals Inc. ("Tectonic") is compelled to speak out and commit to bringing systemic change around equity, diversity and inclusion in the workplace, the areas in which the company operates and throughout the mineral and mining industry.
We are at a crossroads as a society: no longer can we be silent observers of discrimination or exclusion in any form. We must call out racism when we see it, commit to holding each other accountable, and begin having difficult conversations with our families, friends, and colleagues to challenge our own preconceptions, biases (conscious and unconscious) and beliefs. In confronting discrimination—be it racism, homophobia, sexism or any other—we must be willing to acknowledge our privilege and to listen to those who experience it. We must remember that just because something is not a problem for us does not mean it's not a problem. We must believe our friends and neighbours when they share their experiences with us of discrimination and racism they face and commit to change.
"As a father, I want to see a better world for my kids. As a leader, it's clear to me that we need to acknowledge that discrimination exists, to listen to those who face it, and to commit to real change, starting with ourselves first. It's the only way forward" - Tectonic President and CEO, Tony Reda.
While Dr. King's wisdom and peaceful protest helped progress America's slow climb out of the darkness of segregation and racial injustice, recent high-profile stories in media highlighting unjust impacts on minorities and the ensuing civil unrest, have shone the spotlight on the unfortunate truth: five decades on, we have just begun to fully emerge into the light of equality for all.
While the past few years did put the spotlight on the continuing discriminatory incidents occurring in the US, Canada is not immune to these issues. Our country's legacy of racial and ethnic discrimination through residential schools, colonization, the Sixties Scoop or the Komagata Maru are all root causes of the problem that continues to infest our society even today. Be it the inequity created by the Indian Act, missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls, deaths of Black Canadians at the hands of police, the over-representation of Indigenous people (particularly Indigenous women) in Canadian prisons or the recent defacement of pictographs of spiritual significance —they are all a shameful reminder of widespread discrimination that we must all commit to overcome. Indeed, the natural resource sector itself has a long history of systemic discrimination.
Tectonic therefore commits to confronting discrimination head-on and is starting with immediate actions, such as:
- We are implementing two scholarships for black and indigenous students in partnership with Doyon, Limited, Alaska's largest private landholder and one of the largest Native Regional Corporations.
- Mandating our entire team to undertake professional development specific to Cultural Competency and Anti-Racism Awareness and Responder Training. To that effect, Tectonic management and the Board of Directors recently completed a two-day anti-racism workshop hosted by the Magassa Intercultural Capacity Building Specialists.
- A full audit of all internal policies, controls, guidelines, and practices is underway.
- Developing an interactive workshop on anti-racism and intercultural competency, which we plan to bring forward to the entire mineral exploration and mining industry.
- We will continue to actively investigate opportunities to be an industry leader in creating inclusion and fighting systemic racism.
"Our commitment to diversity and inclusion extends to everything we do," says Mel Benson, Tectonic Chairman. "From community engagement and diversity guidelines in recruitment and hiring to supporting our employees to speak up, we are committed to supporting and effecting change." This commitment includes standing firmly behind staff who raise issues of discrimination or harassment in the workplace; and a continued commitment to maintaining a safe and inclusive workplace for all our colleagues.
As parents of the children who will reap the rewards and bear the burdens we leave behind; as business leaders who strive to make positive contributions towards the fulfillment of human rights through and within our business activities; and as global citizens who respect and welcome diversity, we at Tectonic celebrate individuals for their distinct talents, skills, and abilities. The broad spectrum of contributions from a widely diverse group makes Tectonic stronger and our world a better place to live.
Let's come together as an industry to commit to actions that actively promote change. I invite my industry colleagues and our partners around the world to reach out to us at [email protected] to collaborate on eradicating racism in our industry and join us using #mineoutracism to take this movement forward.
President and CEO
Tectonic Metals Inc.
Tectonic believes that responsible mineral exploration and development can positively impact the communities in which the company lives and operates. We believe in early and ongoing community engagement, best practices in ESG and the development of a strong safety culture. Tectonic is committed to the following core values: passion, integrity, diversity, patience, focus, perseverance, honesty, fairness, accountability, and respect. Tectonic is proud to have Doyon, Limited, a prominent Alaska Native Regional Corporation and Alaska's largest private landowner as our largest single shareholder. For further information about Tectonic please visit our website at www.tectonicmetals.com or contact Bill Stormont, Investor Relations, at toll-free 1-888-685-8558 or by email at [email protected].
SOURCE Tectonic Metals Inc.