Indigenous Communities

Orange Shirt Donation Campaign a Success!

In support of National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, Universal Rail organized an Orange Shirt donation campaign to honour the lost children and survivors of residential schools, their families, and communities. We are proud that this employee-driven and company-matching campaign raised $3,000 in total donations for our community partner, the Edmonton Aboriginal Seniors Centre.

Along with the orange shirts purchased, we have sent out orange shirt hard hat decals to our field staff. Thank you to everyone who contributed to this important cause.

Progressive Aboriginal Relations (PAR)

OWS Railroad Construction & Maintenance is pleased to announce that we have officially completed the first stage of the Committed portion of the Progressive Aboriginal Relations (PAR) Certification Program. This is a Corporate Social Responsibility program with an emphasis on Aboriginal Relations. OWS’ involvement in PAR indicates our commitment to the continuous improvement of Aboriginal relations and communities via the application of PAR’s four critical drivers throughout our operations. These drivers include:

  • Leadership Actions: Company leaders support an organizational focus on progressive Aboriginal relations across the company; such actions have an impact in achieving and sustaining positive results.
  • Employment: The company commits resources to achieving equitable representation of Aboriginal persons in the workplace.
  • Business Development: The company commits resources to the development of business relationships with Aboriginal-owned businesses.
  • Community Relationships: The company commits to develop and sustain positive relations with Aboriginal communities, members and stakeholders through engagement and investment.

For Aboriginal communities our commitment provides a high level of assurance that we are a good partner, a great place to work, and are committed to the prosperity of Aboriginal communities, businesses, and individuals. For OWS the PAR certification program confirms our commitment that Aboriginal relations are addressed as part of our overall corporate social responsibility strategy.

If you have any question about PAR, please visit, or reach out to your local Human Resources representative.

Aboriginal Procurement Champion (APC)

OWS Railroad Construction & Maintenance is thrilled to join CCAB’s initiative towards Economic Reconciliation by becoming an Aboriginal Procurement Champion. 

In recent months, the Canadian Council of Aboriginal Business (CCAB) has been developing a new Aboriginal Procurement Strategy highlighting the opportunities and value of Aboriginal procurement relationships. With a focus on connecting Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal businesses, the multi-year strategy includes several key pillars;

  • CCAB is recruiting leaders from the business community to serve as Aboriginal Procurement Champions.
  • CCAB is creating Canada’s largest directory of Certified Aboriginal Businesses, which are independently certified as at least 51% Aboriginal owned and controlled.
  • Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal companies will be able to exchange information about procurement opportunities via a new Aboriginal Procurement Marketplace.

As an Aboriginal Procurement Champion, OWS Railroad Construction & Maintenance is committed to advancing our relationships with Indigenous business communities by ensuring we have more Indigenous businesses participating within our corporate supply chains.

For more information on becoming an Aboriginal Procurement Champion please click the button below.