January 12, 2017

EXCLUSIVE: Natural Resources Canada wasted $24K on “diversity industry” consultants

Andrew LawtonRebel Commentator

While many small businesses in Canada are struggling to keep the lights on, the federal government is spending tens of thousands of dollars into workplace diversity initiatives.

Under Access to Information, I obtained a contract between Natural Resources Canada and a company called Martrain for diversity consulting.

The value of the contract on the list was almost $9,000, but when I accessed the actual contract, the final amount was over $24,000, because payment was broken up over two fiscal years.

The reason for the expenditure?

“Evaluation, gaps analysis and development of guidelines for bias-free evaluation and interview processes for hiring new employees.”

That was the title of the project, paid for out of the budget of NRCan’s Visible Minority Advisory Council.

The fact that the department has a council of employees dealing with visible minority-related issues in the workplace suggests that there isn’t an issue with bias in hiring.

There’s also a separate council for persons with disabilities and for women—and this is just in one government department.

I’m certain that this is replicated across the government.

As part of the training, employees did mock interviews (each breakout group had a translator, of course) and looked for biased language in hiring.

According to the proprietor of the company that received the sole source contract, employers need to be aware of, among other things:

“Subjective culture areas that trigger misunderstanding in the hiring process: persuasion, describing accomplishment, self-promotion of career and projects, hierarchy understanding, risk tolerance, teamwork versus individuality, and career management and expectation.”

So talking yourself up in an interview is a subjective cultural norm now?

That’s what these types of processes do though—create problems that don’t exist.

While diversity may once have been a worthwhile goal, now it’s just an industry.


You must be logged in to comment. Click here to log in.
commented 2017-01-13 19:37:57 -0500
As a diversity and workplace inclusion consultant, I believe employee resource groups and councils which separate employees by dimension only create more division. We need to be focusing more on how we are the same to develop strong teams instead of always focusing on differences. Differences which include foreign language experience, knowledge of ASL, international travel, life/work experience and more can be leveraged to the benefit of the company.

Indeed, diversity has become an industry and part of its downside is that we see as consultants are employers who want to be considered as “Best Diversity Employer” but they treat their employees terribly. It is often the small business person who does not have a diversity hiring mandate who gives people opportunities who might otherwise be overlooked who does so without recognition.

Some of the comments I am reading here have a lot to do with Employment Equity — which left a really bad stain on the psyche of white Christian males, understandably so. It is why I choose to help employers with finding the best employees possible with fair hiring practices. — instead of focusing on candidates as one-dimensional.

While I agree with most of what Lawton says in the column, some parts require clarification. As for the consultant, reviewing interviewing/hiring process and evaluating them for equity that makes sense and I will explain why. Many cultural groups like the Chinese, and several others have a tendency to underplay their achievements in an interview because humility is a value as so it is in First Nations cultures. This means that while you may have a qualified Chinese or First Nations candidate sitting in front of you for an interview and has all of the skills, but does not brag about him/herself like how we are taught, will not get the job. Meanwhile, they may be the best person.

There are a few other points worth mentioning. Certainly for any work in the public service which is over $5000 at least in Ontario, must go through a bidding process. This does not mean it is always done or done fairly. Many consultants often feel that the bidder has been chosen in advance. While $24,000 may seem like a high price tag, I can almost bet that at 50% of that was spent on French translation. When the Federal Government is your client, there is an expectation to provide everything in both official languages. Translation services are very expensive.

Contrary to what subscribers to the Rebel Media may believe, conservatism and diversity/inclusion are not necessarily incompatible — the difference is how you deal with them. I am probably the only conservative diversity/workplace inclusion consultant who challenges the inequities of PC.

Just as I might not understand your work, you probably don’t understand mine — that does not make it useless. For sure, there is a lot of useless diversity training out there — but I am not one of the providers.
commented 2017-01-13 18:56:07 -0500
I challenge ANY legal pundit in Canada to defend the “Employment Equity Act” here on this forum. I say it is equivalent to the Nuremberg Acts of 1933 by all meaningfull comparisons including the rationale and motivation for enacting them…in other words….the “employment Equity Act” is a Jew in Germany style pogrom.
commented 2017-01-13 11:30:41 -0500
It seems to me this Act was setup to discriminate against White folk, White, heterosexual, Christian males…I guess because of our White privilege and patriarchy, it’s okay.
Employment Equity Act
S.C. 1995, c. 44. Assented to 1995-12-15
“The purpose of this Act is to achieve equality in the workplace so that no person shall be denied employment opportunities or benefits for reasons unrelated to ability and, in the fulfilment of that goal, to correct the conditions of disadvantage in employment experienced by women, aboriginal peoples, persons with disabilities and members of visible minorities by giving effect to the principle that employment equity means more than treating persons in the same way but also requires special measures and the accommodation of differences.”

“… no person shall be denied employment opportunities or benefits for reasons unrelated to ability…”Like White folk you mean?

Liberalism is a mental disorder…
commented 2017-01-13 05:46:56 -0500
@dan Mancuso…..I joined the public service in 1987….before the “Employment Equity Act” and at no time did I sign agreement to comply with it. After attending one or two of these indoctrination sessions I refused to attend any others. That DID cost me promotions but I was by no means the only one who objected.

When Harper was in power it was the unions who took up the cause and kept insisting that employees needed annual booster shots of this indoctrination. Part of management’s requirement for performance bonuses is what percentage of employee’s who did not sign the agreement they can cajole into complying.
commented 2017-01-13 02:05:11 -0500
I’m sure the tree being cut gives a big rat’s ass as to who is wielding the chainsaw?…
commented 2017-01-13 01:51:28 -0500
Why the hell doesn’t someone pay me to be useless?
commented 2017-01-13 00:10:06 -0500
I was just wondering what it would be like to work at a job where these re-education camp style diversity courses were mandatory. LOL. I can just picture it:
‘Ah, no thanks I’ll pass.’
‘What, whaddayamean, mandatory?’
‘No. I don’t think so, I’m here to work, to do a job, I’m not here to be forced into this social engineering and indoctrination made up by a bunch of delusional lefty fruitcakes and degenerates.
Like I said, no thanks, now if you will excuse me I have work to do.’

‘Fired!? Whaddayamean fired…’
commented 2017-01-12 17:40:43 -0500
Dope is now touring Canada to ‘connect’ with ordinary Canadians. He is doing nothing but selling his proposed voting scheme to the gullible little sheep who keep saying bah bah bah. Meanwhile, slitting their throats to bleed them and feed the hungry public servants. The only people getting federal govt jobs are immigrants, so their system is based on minorities. To think that white women were once a minority in the fed govt.
commented 2017-01-12 16:29:11 -0500
Public service lesson #1- See that sign about not having to serve upset citizens? Run with that & get back to us. The last part is to humour them. Sunny Ways !!!
commented 2017-01-12 16:22:25 -0500
“Diversity consulting” can be summed up with this POWERPOINT presentation:

(1) If the candidate is not white and male that IS diversity and that IS GOOD

(2) If the candidate IS white and male that IS NOT diversity and that IS NOT good.

(3) Exceptions to (1) can be deemed diversity if the candidate is disabled or gay.

I will be submitting my bill for consulting fees to theREBEL’s financial department. The bonus is that no employee downtime occured when theREBEL staff would have normally been compelled on pain of disciplinary sanction to attend this consulting seminar……….:-) And I charge like a rhino for this bullshit….:-)
commented 2017-01-12 16:22:09 -0500
I thought they were focused on diversifying the economy? The biggest diversity deficit in the public service is conservative minded people. Can we take that grievance to some employment or social justice court ?
commented 2017-01-12 15:17:38 -0500
Sole sourced to Jeanne Martinson, M.A. Hmmmm? She wouldn’t per chance be a party worker for the Lying Party of Corruption? Of course not, the L.P.C. is always honest about its dishonesty.