Nunatsiaq Online
NEWS: Nunavut February 07, 2017 - 4:00 pm

Nunavut Inuit training fund coughs up $3 million for 12 projects

"This path will lead us to healthy families, healthy communities and healthy Inuit"

NUNATSIAQ NEWS
Bernard Valcourt, then the minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada; Cathy Towtongie, then president of Nunavut Tunngavik; and Peter Taptuna, premier of Nunavut, at the signing ceremony for the big out-of-court settlement agreement that resolved a lawsuit that NTI filed against Ottawa in December 2006. That deal produced the $175-million training fund that is now controlled by the Makigiaqta Inuit Training Corp. This week, the GN and NTI announced $3 million in spending from that fund. (FILE PHOTO)
Bernard Valcourt, then the minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada; Cathy Towtongie, then president of Nunavut Tunngavik; and Peter Taptuna, premier of Nunavut, at the signing ceremony for the big out-of-court settlement agreement that resolved a lawsuit that NTI filed against Ottawa in December 2006. That deal produced the $175-million training fund that is now controlled by the Makigiaqta Inuit Training Corp. This week, the GN and NTI announced $3 million in spending from that fund. (FILE PHOTO)

The board of the Makigiaqta Inuit Training Corp. will distribute more than $3 million among 12 different Inuit training projects, Nunavut Tunngavik Inc. and the Government of Nunavut announced Feb. 6.

The Makigiaqta Inuit Training Corp. is the Inuit training body that received $175 million in 2015, part of a $255.5 million out-of-court deal that settled a lawsuit NTI filed against the federal government in December 2006.

The money will go to the following organizations for various training projects:

• Qaggiavuut;

• Ilisaqsivik Society;

• Arviat Wellness Centre;

• Qaujigiartiit Health Research Centre;

• Ilinniapaa Campus;

• Arctic Children & Youth Foundation;

• Kivalliq Inuit Association;

• Pirurvik Preschool;

• Nunavut Sivuniksavut;

• Nunavut Fisheries and Marine Training;

• Hamlet of Taloyoak; and,

• the Kitikmeot Inuit Association.

A joint NTI-GN news release said Makigiaqta’s board chose those groups because “they conduct work within Makigiaqta’s priority areas.”

That includes “holistic adult learning programs, advanced adult learning programs, wrap-around supports for Inuit students in K-12 and post-secondary, early childhood development and Inuktut and Inuit culture in the workplace,” the release said.

“By funding these important projects, Makigiaqta started a process to help Nunavut Inuit obtain the skills needed to seek and maintain employment in all areas of Nunavut’s economy. This path will lead us to healthy families, healthy communities and healthy Inuit. This is what we envisioned when we negotiated Article 23 of the Nunavut Agreement,” NTI President Aluki Kotierk said in a release.

In the lawsuit that NTI and the federal government settled in 2015, one of NTI’s biggest allegations was that Ottawa had been failing to carry out its obligations under Article 23 of the agreement.

Article 23 is the section of the Nunavut land claims agreement that says governments must do certain things, such as offer affirmative action programs, to help Inuit get jobs with the territorial and federal governments.

And Article 23 says those measures must stay in place until the proportion of Inuit working in government is equal to the proportion of Inuit living in Nunavut — currently about 85 per cent.

Makigiaqta Inuit Training Corp.’s seven-member board of directors is made up of five people nominated by Inuit orgs—the president and vice president of NTI, plus the presidents of the three regional Inuit associations—plus two people nominated by the GN—the premier and the education minister.

The Feb. 6 release said the training corporation has set up an advisory council, developed a work plan, and developed a framework for a strategic plan.

The corporation is also waiting for a Nunavut Inuit Labour Force Analysis that the federal government is required to produce under the May 2015 settlement agreement.

That will draw data from a variety of sources, including this year’s Aboriginal People’s Survey.

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