Water Compliance Specialist

Supervisor - Water Operations and Fire Safety Director

Salary - $55,000 - $95,000 per annum (Commensurate of experience and qualifications)


Join our technical team:


The Water and Wastewater Hub is located at our Sioux lookout main office and is responsible for the safe and effective operation of the Windigo First Nation remote community water treatment, sewage treatment, distribution, and collection systems. With recent major capital investment, we are currently overseeing the operations of 5 water treatment systems comprising of 2 new membrane water treatment plants, and the expected upgrade to 3 additional conventional water treatment facilities in the near future.

Our organization provides technical support focused on continuous improvement and innovation while respecting first nation culture and values. We offer a collaborative team environment and excellent place to challenge yourself in creating and adapting creative solutions for our member communities. Our continued goal is to provide clean safe drinking water while ensuring the appropriate tools are in place to operate the facilities.


Position purpose:


Working in collaboration with the ORO, local operators and leadership, the Water Compliance Specialist is challenged with the adaptation of existing provincial DWQMS models for the development of a first nation specific DWQMS. Responsibilities also include the further development of tools for tracking, organizing, and monitoring compliance related matters. Travel to the communities will be necessary to engage local operators while understanding the operation of each facility. Strong communication skills are key for successful engagement and is vital when understanding the unique challenges posed while operating remote treatment facilities.


Primary function:


Responsible for overseeing the obligations associated with the Canadian Drinking Water Guidelines. Adaptation of the key elements of the provincial DWQMS and regulatory framework while respecting first nations values and traditions. The development of plans and procedures for tracking, organizing and monitoring management system data is the main function of the position.


Working procedures:


  1. Compliance and program management functions

1.1 Quality management system

  • Develops, maintains, and administers the Water Quality Management System in accordance with the requirements of the First Nation Drinking Water Quality Management System (FNDWQMS) and within the compliance limits of the any applicable acts.

  • Works to continuously improve upon a the FNDWQMS to support the delivery of safe, reliable and cost effective clean drinking water services that meet the needs of the communities.

  • Assist in the development, maintenance and administers the management system in accordance with the Federal Canadian Drinking Water Guidelines and legislation.

  • Applies knowledge of hazard analysis and critical control point analysis (HACCP) to ensure compliance with applicable guidelines and provincial Acts as a reference.

  • Coordinates and performs audits of the facilities quality management system for compliance and conformance to best management practices, policy/ procedures, operational requirements, and legislative requirements.

  • Manages and coordinates the implementation of audit programs as necessary to achieve objectives, legislative requirements and the continual development of services, specifically focused on water management.

  • Provides support to ensure regulatory compliance with respect to guidelines, regulations, permits, approvals, inspections, and other activities, as required.


1.2 System documentation

  • Develops and ensures that the Community Water Operations Plan conforms to the requirements of the QMS, legislative requirements and objectives.

  • Develops and ensures that Operational Plan is kept current, and coordinates updates and technical content with operations personnel.

  • Oversees the development and maintenance of procedures, guidelines and templates, and develops and manages procedures and protocols that will track and provide regulatory focused oversight for water and wastewater services.


1.3 Legislation, licensing, certification and training

  • Assists in ensuring that all personnel are aware of all applicable legislative and regulatory requirements that pertain to their duties for the operation of the Water System, and the QMS.

  • Assists in identifying and delivering training and education for staff and leadership on their responsibilities under the QMS and how meeting these responsibilities assist with the protection of public health and the environment.

  • Assists in ensuring that all personnel are aware of applicable environmental related legislative and regulatory requirements that pertain to operation and maintenance of the community infrastructure.

  • Assists with the development coordination and maintenance of a database to track the status of Water/Wastewater licenses/certificates, training hours and continuing education units.


2. Policy and planning, quality assurance, and reporting


2.1 Policy and planning

  • Monitors and reports on legislation and policy from other jurisdictions that may have implications for the community, including federal and provincial governments.

  • Identifies potential issues that might affect the community, escalates concerns and researches and recommends solutions; analyses and reviews all available information and recommends options with benefits and drawbacks.

  • Coordinates responses to regulatory postings to identify areas of overlap, implications and to drive compliance improvement projects.

  • Assists in the development and implementation of action plans, to address any non-conformance items and other audit observations received from audits.

  • Maintains knowledge of and adheres to all Windigo and community Policies and Procedures.


2.2 Quality assurance

  • Assists in the establishment and maintenance of clear objectives.

  • Manages the implementation of process improvements and special projects.

  • Ensures quality assurance activities to monitor program effectiveness and support continuous improvement attitudes.


2.3 Reporting

  • Assists in the compilation of records, and prepares submittal documents required to satisfy ISC reporting commitments.

  • Prepares reports, memos, technical summaries, presentations and process event reports on the performance of the management systems, and on a wide range of regulatory and strategic policy issues, and programs.

  • Provides guidance, input to and/or prepares reports, briefing notes, presentations, statistics and analysis, as requested.

  • Manages information in accordance with legislation and corporate standards.


3. Liaison, communication & customer service activities

  • Acts as a liaison with ISC and MOECC on important regulatory issues and brings forward relevant information to the Department Management team and Leadership for discussion prior to implementation.

  • Develops requirements for special projects and/or investigations, and supervises consultants and contractors engaged for studies and projects.

  • Responds to customer enquiries directly and/or resolves difficult or highly sensitive complaints either verbally or in writing.

  • Liaises with stakeholders and communities to coordinate similar activities, including the sharing of findings and information.

  • Participates on committees, meetings, task forces, work groups and special projects, as directed.

  • Liaises with the various agencies including First Nation, Federal and Provincial.


4. Human resource responsibilities

  • Participates in the communities Health & Safety Program and complies with the Occupational Health and Safety Act, other applicable legislation and best practices.

  • Participates in ongoing Training and Development and ensures all mandatory requirements are met and maintained.


Skill/knowledge, requirements and assets


  • Post Secondary degree, diploma or certification in a discipline pertinent to the job function.

  • Understanding of First Nation cultural traditions and practices.

  • Direct experience in the Water/Wastewater environmental regulatory field, with responsibilities for policy development and analysis and for monitoring and improving regulatory compliance and reporting systems and functions is an asset.

  • Knowledge of ISO and/or other management systems for developing, planning, implementing and monitoring standard operating policies and procedures in highly regulated industries.

  • Working knowledge of the Canadian Drinking Water Guidelines, the Ontario Water Resources Act, Safe Drinking Water Act 2002 (O. Reg. 170/03), Source Water Protection legislation, Permit to Take Water, Certificate of Approval (Water, Wastewater) for various infrastructure components, Drainage Act, Conservation Act, WHMIS, Certification of Drinking-Water System Operations (O. Reg. 128/04), Licensing Guide for Operators or Water and Waste Water Facilities, American Water Works Association Standards, O. Regulation 903 (Wells), procedures for chlorination and potable water supplies in Ontario, Wastewater Federation Guidelines is an asset.

  • Demonstrated knowledge of applicable legislation, First Nations and Federal government organizational structure, industry standards, issues and best practices.

  • Knowledge of health and safety protocols and procedures related to environmental hazards.

  • Demonstrated experience in writing and reviewing reports/studies, including ability to identify problems, research, analyze and interpret data.

  • Knowledge of provincial/federal legislative, regulatory and policy framework and ability to interpret and translate into policy and program options for the First Nation.

  • Proficient utilizing word-processing, spreadsheet, presentation and database software, and the Internet.

  • Excellent interpersonal, project/time management, analytical, communication, public/media relations, problem-solving skill and analytical skills.

  • Able to visit access all water/ wastewater facilities and equipment during inspections, audits, etc.

  • Able to fly to remote communities to perform duties.

  • Availability to attend evening meetings or other events, and if necessary to work overtime as may be required.

  • Up to one (1) year period of adjustment, orientation and adaption on the job.

  • Ability to speak Oji-cree an asset.


Salary will be commensurate with experience and qualifications. The position does not have a closing date and applications will be reviewed until the position is filled. For more information, please contact tsayers@windigo.on.ca or call 807-737-1585