A Message from Our Senior Vice-President Environment, Sustainable Development and People
2017 was a year of great pride for our company, and for our employees, as we celebrated Agnico Eagle’s 60th anniversary. While it could simply be pride in having survived 60 years of ups and downs in the gold market, for all of us at Agnico Eagle, it is truly so much more.
We are proud of what we have built together, not only our producing assets but equally important, our culture: the Agnico Eagle Way. You can ask any newcomer, like I was 17 years ago, and it doesn’t take them long to understand that collaboration is as highly praised at Agnico Eagle as leadership. We all recognize that succeeding in the mining business is not down to one person. It’s about being resilient, with collaboration being the key ingredient that makes it all possible – and I would add, makes it more fun.
We believe that each and every one of our employees should truthfully be able to say: “I love my job.” As a company and as managers, it is our responsibility to remove any obstacles that would prevent the achievement of this goal.
We must provide a safe working environment and foster a culture where we take care of each other. The use of appropriate tools and new technology goes hand-in-hand with good planning to make our working environments safer.
As Agnico Eagle’s physical accident frequency has continued to decrease, we have begun looking more closely at mental health as the next frontier for overall employee wellness. We want to equip our supervisors with the right tools to be able to detect mental distress before it becomes a problem for an employee. We also want to remove the stigma associated with mental health problems, which often prevents early detection. Working with our employees to achieve a better work/life balance is also crucial to achieving overall wellness. We recognize that this is especially challenging for employees at our fly-in fly-out operations.
We ultimately want to provide our employees with stable long-term employment and our communities with lasting economic benefits. To do so, we need to think ahead and take a risk management approach to achieving a high level of environmental performance and social acceptability. There is no turning back, we must hit high standards on both fronts to be successful. We cannot do this alone, we must partner with communities early on in the design of our projects and take advantage of traditional knowledge, where it is available, to improve our understanding of the environment. Collaboration comes strongly into play here, as does flexibility and innovation. There is no doubt we will face further obstacles that will require technological advances within the mining industry. Agnico Eagle will continue to partner with the Canadian Mining Innovation Council which is studying ways to mine differently in order to reduce our industry’s collective use of energy and water, as well as our production of various wastes.
Despite the many challenges ahead, and with the support and commitment of our workforce, I am confident that the entrepreneurial spirit – still the guiding force of our company – will ensure Agnico Eagle’s success for another 60 years.
Environment, Sustainable Development and People
March 19, 2018