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Workplace Safety North hosts 26th annual conference in Sudbury

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A sold out, two-day conference hosted by Workplace Safety North is underway in Sudbury.

Tina Varughese, the first keynote speaker, is a cross-cultural communication and diversity expert who talked about building an inclusive workplace with a sense of belonging.

“Really giving them some practical and tactical strategies on how to become more inclusive how to create that culture of belonging,” Varughese said.

“And even psychological safety, which isn’t the easiest topic sometimes at the workplace because that is more of a journey not a destination. It’s not something that comes easy -- it comes with time.”

Officials said the theme of the conference this year is ‘inclusive mines, a safer future’ and the goal is emphasizing the importance of diversity and equity in ensuring safer work environments.

“In northern Ontario we currently have 36 active mines so we have 32 significant projects in the works, also we have a labour shortage,” said Mike Parent, Workplace Safety North interim president and CEO.

“It’s going to take all kinds of persons to come and help us keep our mines operating and build new mines. The theme of diversity equity and inclusion couldn’t be more appropriate,”

Workplace Safety North officials said there are 350 people attending in person and 150 people joining online from all over the world including Bosnia, Australia, Abu Dhabi and Greece.

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