We believe that a strong commitment to social responsibility is important and that socially responsible companies are more likely to improve shareholder value over the longer term – which in turn helps pension plan members. This contributes to the sustainability of the Public Service Pension Plan (PSPP).
Whether it’s administering the PSPP or investing the pension plan’s assets, social factors – including those related to health and safety, labour and community relations, diversity, equity and inclusion – are key considerations.
Within our organization
Diversity, equity and inclusion are core OPB values, but we recognize that we have more work to do to create an inclusive organization. We are working to ensure diversity, equity and inclusion are better reflected within our leadership, and within in our investments.
OPB recognizes the impact of systemic racism, and more specifically, on Black and Indigenous communities and commits to specific steps across the organization to ensure a safe, diverse and inclusive organization and experience. OPB also recognizes that having a diverse, equitable and inclusive environment goes beyond racism. To that end, we have undertaken the following:
- Mandated inclusion, diversity and bias awareness training for all employees
- Reviewed, and will continue to review, our HR practices and policies to identify and address unconscious bias and any other barriers
- Adopted anonymized candidate screening to help reduce bias in our hiring process
- Partnered with the 519, a Toronto-based community centre that focuses on 2SLGBTQ+ communities, to provide Gender & Sexual Diversity training for all employees
- Joined the Canadian Centre for Diversity and Inclusion (CCDI)
- Signed The Black North Initiative's CEO Pledge Against Anti-Black Systemic Racism
- Partnered with the Canadian Association of Urban Financial Professionals (CAUFP)
- Created an education space for ongoing awareness-building and education
- Recognized dates of significance related to diversity, equity and inclusion, including raising awareness about mental health and the importance of ending stigma
Within our investments
Investment Management Corporation of Ontario (IMCO) manages pension fund assets on behalf of OPB. IMCO includes the Canadian Investor Statement on Diversity and Inclusion as one of its core ESG Beliefs. It has incorporated diversity, equity and inclusion into its due diligence process for new investments, and has signed the Responsible Investing Association’s Investor Statement to address systemic racism within the investment industry.
OPB and IMCO recognize the importance of considering ESG related risks in the investment management process, and have developed a screening guideline to help determine which companies, sectors or activities we won’t invest in. Excluded investments include:
- entities sanctioned under Canada’s Special Economic Measures Act or United Nations Act;
- companies involved in the production of controversial weapons such as antipersonnel landmines, cluster munitions, chemical, biological, and nuclear weapons;
- companies involved in the operation of for-profit prisons and detention centres;
- companies involved in the production of tobacco products.