NEWS: Nunavut June 02, 2014 - 3:33 pm

Fewer than 100 people officially “homeless” in Nunavut’s major centres

"There are a wide range of issues that lead people to become homeless"

DAVID MURPHY

(Updated June 2, 5:15 p.m.)

Just under 100 people in Nunavut’s three regional centres are homeless.

That’s according to the latest results of a point-in-time homelessness survey, which Nunavut’s minister responsible for homelessness, Jeannie Ugyuk, relayed to the legislative assembly June 2.

“Our count identified 98 people in Nunavut who were homeless, without housing of any kind, on the day of our count,” Ugyuk said, reading from her minister’s statement.

Ugyuk said the survey was taken of homeless people in Iqaluit, Rankin Inlet and Cambridge Bay, which adds to the previous homelessness count taken in 2010 which estimated Nunavut-wide homelessness at 1,200.

That survey helped gather “information related to the causes of homelessness in Nunavut, and of the needs of those who are homeless.”

Ugyuk said there are 57 people in Iqaluit using emergency shelters, and 15 people staying “in places not meant to be housing.”

“In the other communities 11 people were staying in shelters and 15 in places not meant to be housing,” Ugyuk said.

Ugyuk said 93 people completed the homelessness survey, which has “produced a great deal of valuable information about how people find themselves to be homeless in Nunavut, and what they need to find and maintain housing.” 

“We know that people who are homeless need housing, but our survey demonstrates that there are a wide range of issues that lead people to become homeless,” Ugyuk said.

Ugyuk said these results will be reviewed in community meetings in Iqaluit, Rankin Inlet and Cambridge Bay, in the coming weeks.

Nunavut Poverty Reduction staff are then expected to write a report about the findings.