Haisla_Triton LP staff profile
October 1, 2018, the day LNG Canada announced a positive final investment decision, was momentous for many. LNG Canada, Haisla First Nation, and industry groups around the world celebrated, excited about the future.
Vicky Shaw, a Haisla member, was part of that celebration – and for her, it was very personal.
“I don’t think anyone realized how much it meant for me to be there,” she said.
Shaw is one of 30 Haisla members who make up the Spirit of the Kitlope Dance group, who performed at the FID announcement ceremony in Vancouver. She is also an Environmental Technician at Triton Environmental Consultants.
Shaw has worked for Triton since 2011, and as part of her work, she has conducted environmental studies for LNG Canada since the very start of the project. Even before most people in Northwest BC knew what liquid natural gas was, Shaw was hiking in and around the forests and streams around her village, doing bird nesting surveys and fish salvaging.
“I was part of the work from the beginning and then part of the celebration,” Shaw said. “It was a full circle, like it was meant to be.”
Shaw, 47, is a single mother of three. She lives on the waterfront in Kitimaat Village, the largest Haisla community in Northwest BC, about 10 kilometres away from the District of Kitimat.
After completing the environmental monitoring program, offered through the Haisla Band, Shaw was immediately hired by Triton Environmental.
While she wasn’t sure what the job would entail, she was excited to try something new.
“That feeling has never stopped,” she said. “My job is always changing. I love the variety. I’m always learning new things, but also falling back on the experience I’ve gained on the job.”
Before working at Triton, Shaw was working on-call for the Haisla Band office. Day-to-day, she wouldn’t know if she’d get called in as a janitor, secretary, to the gas bar, to work a couple jobs in one day, or not at all. “I was all over the place. It was a real struggle,” she said.
Now Triton has stable work year-round. And, she said, she feels understood and respected by her employer.
“Triton is a really good company to work for. They really try to work with me while some other employers might work against you,” she said. “If you do have issues, you talk it through and try to find a solution.”
Having now worked on many of the large industrial projects in Haisla Territory, such as the Kitimat Modernization and Kemano projects, Shaw also appreciates the awareness and knowledge she gains through her job.
“I know and understand all the different projects happening here. I get a better perspective of everything that’s going on in our territory and being done,” she said.
Shaw has lived in Kitimaat Village her whole life and feels proud that she now has a hand in monitoring and protecting the land on which she and her people have always lived.
Outside of work, Shaw spends most of her time with her kids and grandkids. She also volunteers with the Haisla Fire Department and practices regularly with the Spirit of the Kitlope Dance Group.
“I love hearing the drums. I love the feeling of being grounded again,” she said.
Vicky Shaw was hired by Triton Environmental Consultants as part of the Haisla_Triton Limited Partnership. Triton has a record of working with First Nations. Recognizing the value of the local knowledge of First Nation team members, the company consistently provides employment and training opportunities.
Haisla_Triton LP staff profile
When people ask Derrick Robinson what he does for work, he tells them, “I look after Mother Earth. I look after the water, air, and fish.”
Officially, he’s an Environmental Technician.
Robinson, who is from the Haisla First Nation in Northwest BC, works for Triton Environmental Consultants.
“As of March 1, 2019, I’ll have been working for them for eight years. I can’t believe it’s been that long,” he said. “My family is really proud of me. They know I’m a hard worker. It’s amazing…”
Robinson finds his job fulfilling in so many ways.
“It’s a lot of exercise. You’re outdoors, doing a lot of walking and hiking,” he said. “It keeps you in good shape.”
He especially loves taking new employees under his wing.
“The more you work, the more training you get. And the more you know, the more you know what you are doing. You get stronger and stronger,” he said. “I’m teaching myself and I also teach other people. It feels good to look after employees, and your friends and family.”
“Triton feels like a family,” he said.
Robinson has lived in Kitimaat Village most of his life. He moved to Vancouver for a short stint to work as a landscaper, but the city was too expensive. He returned to the Northwest when his grandfather got sick.
At that time, he managed to get a job at Haisla fisheries and worked there for almost three years.
“But at the end of the season, it would be closed down until Spring,” he said.
So when the Haisla offered the Environmental Monitoring course, Robinson applied. He got his certificate and had an interview with Triton.
Since then, he’s worked on almost all of the major projects in Haisla territory such as LNG Canada, Kitimat LNG, and others. The past couple years have been especially busy.
“There’s been lots of changes on the work site. There’s more people and more people getting hired,” he said. “It’s a good thing.”
On his days off, Robinson focuses on resting, relaxing and his family, who also live in the village and in Kitimat and Terrace.
“It’s good to be home, close to family,” he said. “I love my job. It’s good money. It’s good hours. It’s stable. It makes me work harder every day.”
Derrick Robinson was hired by Triton Environmental Consultants as part of the Haisla_Triton Limited Partnership. Triton has a record of working with First Nations. Recognizing the value of the local knowledge of First Nation team members, the company consistently provides employment and training opportunities.