GN says it takes NTI report, recommendations “seriously”
"Nunavut Tunngavik Inc. continues to be a vital partner for the Government"
The Government of Nunavut came out with a conciliatory news release Nov. 22, in which said it welcomes the release of Nunavut Tunngavik Inc.’s 2010/11 Annual Report on the State of Inuit Culture and Society.
“Nunavut Tunngavik Inc. continues to be a vital partner for the Government and we take their recommendations seriously,” it said.
That’s despite the NTI report’s harsh criticism of the territorial government’s programs and polices, particularly with respect to education.
The release said the GN is analyzing the report and its recommendations in detail and “will respond directly to NTI once that process is complete.”
“As the report makes clear, the future of Nunavut depends on ensuring the health and well-being of our children today,” said Premier Eva Aariak, who is also Nunavut’s education minister. “The GN has made it a priority to ensure the government is better equipped to take action against the challenges confronting our children that the report describes.”
As for the NTI recommendations on Nunavut’s education system, the GN said “these ideas, and the discussions they generate, are essential as the GN continues to build the education system in Nunavut to fully incorporate Inuit values, language and knowledge and to improve the academic achievement of students.”
The GN said this report will contribute to “the informed discussion on the effectiveness of Nunavut’s Education Act when it comes up for review in the near future. “
“The health, well-being and education of Nunavut’s children and youth are a shared responsibility,” said Aariak. “It is the responsibility of everyone – federal and territorial governments, Inuit organizations, communities and parents. Only by working together will the needs of our future generation be met and will they reach their full potential.”
The news release also cited ways that the GN is already responded to some of the other concerns raised in the report.
One example: the creation of a new Department of Family Services.
This new department will ensure that “the design and delivery of our responses are in keeping with the values and approaches of Nunavummiut,” the news relase said.
The GN said it’s also seeking to create a child and youth representative – independent from government – to hear the concerns of Nunavut’s young people and advocate on their behalf.
“As the report makes clear, better housing for Nunavummiut is also essential to improve the lives of children and youth. The GN is developing a Long Term Comprehensive Housing and Homelessness Strategy,” the GN noted.
But the GN said more money is required from the federal government, along with “committed partnership with Inuit organizations, hamlets and the private sector, to find solutions to overcrowding.”