Barrick Gold offers training to aid unemployed miners
Winnemucca, NV — Barrick Turquoise Ridge recently stepped in to assist the Winnemucca community by developing and teaching a free U.S. Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) Refresher Training program for 30 miners who were laid off as a result of closures at nearby competitor operations.
“Our employees were eager to assist these miners in fulfilling their mandatory MSHA requirements,” said Nancy Flowers, Human Resources Superintendent at Barrick Turquoise Ridge. “Not only are safety and occupational health and wellness critical values to our workplace culture so is service to our community.”
Federal law requires all miners to attend a refresher training annually. If training lapses, the miner has to attend courses to get recertified often costing more than $150 per person.
Following multiple mine layoffs, in the Winnemucca area where Barrick’s Turquoise Ridge is located, the Nevada Department of Employment, Training & Rehabilitation and Nevada Job Connect reached out to Turquoise Ridge to ask if Barrick could facilitate refresher training to assist displaced miners in keeping their certifications current.
Nevada Job Connect, which provides workforce development services to employers and job seekers, did not have funding to pay for the training so Turquoise Ridge’s training department, with the assistance of their Safety & Health department, put the courses together as a community service.
“Nevada JobConnect appreciates the efforts of Barrick providing these classes,” said John Parel, Nevada JobConnect business services manager. “Our business partnerships are invaluable in supporting our job seeker community. These classes are extremely important to helping these workers find employment in mining. We are grateful for Barrick’s support.”
Barrick Turquoise Ridge trainers were given time away from work to facilitate the training, which was offered at no cost to the attendees.
Barrick Turquoise Ridge continues to work with DETR and Nevada Job Connect and will offer additional training sessions if the need arises.
Barrick is the world’s leading gold producer, with operations on four continents. The company operates three gold mines in Nevada, providing more than 4,000 of the state’s highest-paying jobs. Barrick is the state’s largest foreign investor and is also Nevada’s largest exporter.
Heather Ashbridge, who started with Nevada State Development Corporation in 2008, previously served in several roles with the organization, including assistant vice president and loan officer. She is based in NSDC’s Reno office.