Whistler-Blackcomb is looking close to home to meet its staffing needs for the upcoming ski season.
The resort and the Mount Currie Indian Band are working together towards a mutually beneficial situation: Whistler-Blackcomb gets a local workforce while Mount Currie band members get work.
"We are very excited about this partnership," Whistler-Blackcomb spokesperson Megan Henderson said in an e-mail. "This relationship will benefit both parties."
Approximately 70 people attended an Aug. 21 information meeting in Mount Currie and, according to Henderson, the meeting went quite well.
"Those who were there seemed receptive," Henderson said in an e-mail, "and asked some very good questions about working for the mountain and the different types of jobs available."
Henderson said a number of people were interested in working at Whistler-Blackcomb and will be given interviews during the company?s local hiring fair in early September.
"We want to give the entire Sea-to-Sky community the opportunity to gain employment," said Henderson. "We want to benefit from the knowledge and experiences of those who have lived in this community for a long time and already have their housing needs met."
According to Henderson, Whistler-Blackcomb has been actively recruiting employees who already live in the Sea-to-Sky region for the past couple of years.
"This initiative is just one of them," Henderson said. "We (also) do several career presentations and programs with the high schools in Squamish, Whistler, Pemberton and Mount Currie."
The Mount Currie band is also working with the Resort Municipality of Whistler and Tourism Whistler to expand its economic opportunities. The Weetama Aboriginal Festival is another example.
Whistler Transit last year began offering bus service to make commuting between Mount Currie, Pemberton and Whistler easier.
"This bus service opens the door for employment for those community members who would have otherwise found it difficult to commute to Whistler," said Henderson.