Nunatsiaq News
Happy kids, new bikes: Children in Kugaaruk try out their new bikes on Saturday, June 9, thanks to the Polar Bike Project, which collects donated bikes from southern Canada and ships them to communities in Nunavut. The project started in June 2015 after Alison Harper and her husband Tim moved to Kugluktuk with the RCMP. Alison rode her fat-tire bike to work every day and saw that kids were fascinated by it. She also saw that many families couldn’t afford bikes and wanted to help. Her group is able to bring donated bikes north thanks to a partnership with the Canadian Coast Guard and Buffalo Airways, which cover the cost of shipping donated bikes to Nunavut communities, where local organizations help put bikes in the hands of kids. (PHOTO COURTESY OF THE POLAR BIKE PROJECT/FACEBOOK)

Nunatsiaq News will be taking a pause from Saturday publication for the summer, but we have just posted a regular Saturday favourite, Kenn Harper's Taissumani column, for your weekend reading. We wish you, our readers, a lovely weekend!
Happy kids, new bikes: Children in Kugaaruk try out their new bikes on Saturday, June 9, thanks to the Polar Bike Project, which collects donated bikes from southern Canada and ships them to communities in Nunavut. The project started in June 2015 after Alison Harper and her husband Tim moved to Kugluktuk with the RCMP. Alison rode her fat-tire bike to work every day and saw that kids were fascinated by it. She also saw that many families couldn’t afford bikes and wanted to help. Her group is able to bring donated bikes north thanks to a partnership with the Canadian Coast Guard and Buffalo Airways, which cover the cost of shipping donated bikes to Nunavut communities, where local organizations help put bikes in the hands of kids. (PHOTO COURTESY OF THE POLAR BIKE PROJECT/FACEBOOK) Nunatsiaq News will be taking a pause from Saturday publication for the summer, but we have just posted a regular Saturday favourite, Kenn Harper's Taissumani column, for your weekend reading. We wish you, our readers, a lovely weekend!
NEWS June 22, 2018 - 3:30 pm

Taissumani, June 22

The strange history of the igloo flag

KENN HARPER

Here is a good question for a parlour game—perhaps for a new edition of Trivial Pursuit.

What place (country, colony, jurisdiction) had Arctic imagery on its flag for 99 years, but has nothing to do with the North? And not just Arctic imagery, but Inuit imagery.

Here’s a clue. It’s not in the...

FULL STORY
NEWS June 22, 2018 - 2:30 pm

Iqaluit visitor comes bearing four hockey bags of menstrual products

“You can eat Kraft Dinner and hotdogs but you can’t not bleed for a week”

COURTNEY EDGAR

Patty Krawec arrived in Iqaluit last week with four hockey bags full of tampons, pads and other menstrual products.

She was flying up from her home in Niagara Falls, Ont., to visit her son. When she realized she could bring two suitcases onboard for free, she knew that there would be a lot of...

FULL STORY
NEWS June 22, 2018 - 1:30 pm

Inuit women working at Baffin mine face regular harassment, discrimination: staffer

“The men just stare and make comments"

SARAH ROGERS

Inuit women employed at a Nunavut mine are the target of sexual harassment, racism and sexism, says a worker at Baffinland’s Mary River mine.

The female Inuk mine employee, who did not want her name made public for fear of further harassment, said she has faced regular discrimination and...

FULL STORY
NEWS June 22, 2018 - 10:30 am

Nunavik community still mourning, fearful after young woman’s murder

“The doors are extra easy to kick in, pretty much everywhere”

COURTNEY EDGAR

Some Kuujjuaq residents are voicing their concerns about their safety after the June 12 death of Chloé Labrie, a 28-year-old medical technician originally from Victoriaville, Que.

Even though Quebec police arrested 20-year-old Randy Koneak in connection to the homicide on June 13 and formally...

FULL STORY
NEWS June 22, 2018 - 9:30 am

Nunavut man charged with murder in Sanikiluaq stabbing

Stabbing prompted day-long standoff in Baffin community

NUNATSIAQ NEWS

A resident of Sanikiluaq was stabbed to death earlier this week, prompting a day-long police standoff and community lockdown.

The Nunavut RCMP and crisis negotiators were called to the Baffin community in the early hours of June 19 to respond to reports of a man barricaded in a home with a

FULL STORY
NEWS June 22, 2018 - 8:30 am

Nunavik to get 134 new social housing units in 2019

But housing survey shows region needs 800 new units to accommodate growing population

SARAH ROGERS

Nunavik will get 134 new social housing units across the region in 2019, spread out across seven different communities.

Housing allocations were announced during the Kativik Regional Government council meetings held in Aupaluk last month.

The units, funded by both the provincial and federal...

FULL STORY
NEWS June 21, 2018 - 4:00 pm

40 Iqaluit inmates to be sent out of Nunavut, following riot

“It’ll be a while before they come back”

BETH BROWN

Updated June 22, 3:45 p.m.

It could be some time before 40 inmates return to Iqaluit’s Baffin Correctional Centre, after an overnight riot on Wednesday, June 20, that left a low-security cellblock in the 60-person jail badly damaged by 26 inmates.

Today, 18 inmates from the BCC are being housed...

FULL STORY
NEWS June 21, 2018 - 3:00 pm

Quebec minister under fire for comments about Nunavik parents

Health Minister Gaétan Barrette apologizes, says remarks weren't aimed at Indigenous groups

SARAH ROGERS

The head of Nunavik’s Inuit birthright organization says a Quebec minister should resign after his remarks about Inuit parents’ ability to accompany their children on medevac flights.

Quebec’s health minister, Gaétan Barrette, was speaking to reporters at an event in Montreal on June 8 when he was...

FULL STORY
NEWS June 21, 2018 - 1:30 pm

Iqaluit chef offers up a medley of Arctic spring delights, muskox, goose, char, seal

"Our Arctic foods speak for themselves"

JANE GEORGE

In Nunavut you usually keep your eyes out for signs of spring, for those long days with enough heat to warm the air, melt the snow and leave a sheen on the sea ice.

These signs of spring also point to the return of geese and other migratory birds to the North, along with greater ease of hunting...

FULL STORY
NEWS June 21, 2018 - 11:15 am

Overnight riot leaves Nunavut jail with “significant” damage

Department of Justice looking to transfer inmates south due to lack of space

BETH BROWN

Several inmates at Baffin Correctional Centre rioted last night, barricading themselves in one unit of the jail.

The resulting damage is severe enough that Nunavut’s Department of Justice is now looking at transferring some inmates to facilities in southern Canada until repairs are complete, said...

FULL STORY
NEWS June 21, 2018 - 9:30 am

Arctic Bay man charged with second-degree murder

Preliminary hearing set for early next year

BETH BROWN

An Arctic Bay man charged with second-degree murder will attend a five-day preliminary hearing in January of next year, according to Nunavut Judge Vital Ouellette.

That hearing is for Andrew Muckpaloo, 30, who appeared in person at the Nunavut Court of Justice in Iqaluit, June 20. The hearing will...

FULL STORY
NEWS June 21, 2018 - 8:15 am

Nunavut premier announces new staff appointments

"I am ready to hit the ground running"

NUNATSIAQ NEWS

Nunavut’s new premier, Joe Savikataaq, continued to fill out his office, with the appointment of Virginia Mearns as principal secretary, which becomes effective on July 3.

“I am thrilled that Ms. Mearns has accepted this position. Her collaborative style and dedication to support Inuit employment...

FULL STORY
NEWS June 20, 2018 - 2:40 pm

Ottawa promises to exempt aviation fuel from carbon tax in Nunavut

Senator Dennis Patterson says the move is a "positive first step"

SARAH ROGERS

The federal government has committed to exempting aviation fuel used in Nunavut and Canada’s two other territories from the country’s carbon tax.

Under Ottawa’s carbon pricing plan, the federal government will place a surcharge of $10 per tonne on carbon-based fuels—mostly diesel—which is set to...

FULL STORY
NEWS June 20, 2018 - 1:40 pm

Spring clean sweep coming to Iqaluit

Community clean up this week, large item pickup next week

BETH BROWN

Grab your gloves and sunscreen Iqaluit, it’s time for community cleanup.

This Friday, June 22 from 9 a.m. until noon, city residents are invited out to tidy up all that trash that showed up in Iqaluit ditches and streams this spring after the snow melted.

You can pick up garbage bags, gloves and...

FULL STORY
NEWS June 20, 2018 - 10:30 am

Nunavik students launch new business, and take it on the road

"We’re the only business that offers fresh bread in the community"

SARAH ROGERS

Launching a business could be a daunting task for some youth, but for a group of high school students in Inukjuak, it’s become their bread and butter.

A group students in Secondary 3, 4 and 5 (Grades 9, 10 and 11) from Innalik school were celebrated last month for their efforts in running a...

FULL STORY
NEWS June 20, 2018 - 9:30 am

Nunavut’s Health Dept. lifts water advisory for Rankin Inlet

But Kivalliq community still faces threats to freshwater source

NUNATSIAQ NEWS

Nunavut health officials lifted a boil water advisory for Rankin Inlet on Monday, June 18.

The Government of Nunavut’s Department of Health issued the alert June 7 as a “precautionary measure,” due to high turbidity levels, or cloudy water.

That notice came just weeks after residents reported...

FULL STORY
NEWS June 20, 2018 - 8:21 am

Awa back in as Nunavut’s devolution negotiator

Savikataaq overturns appointment of Paul Okalik to return Awa to former post

SARAH ROGERS

As part of sweeping changes to some of the Government of Nunavut’s most senior roles, the territory’s new premier has appointed a new—albeit returning—chief negotiator of devolution.

Premier Joe Savikataaq announced on Tuesday, June 19, that Simon Awa would return to his former post as chief...

FULL STORY
NEWS June 19, 2018 - 1:30 pm

First regional visitor centre opens in Rankin Inlet

Nunavut premier does inaugural ribbon cutting in Kivalliq region

BETH BROWN

Less than two days after becoming Nunavut’s new premier, Arviat’s Joe Savikataaq was already cutting ribbons in an official capacity when he visited Rankin Inlet to mark the opening of the Kivalliq Regional Visitor Centre. 

Since he’s also Nunavut’s first Kivalliq premier, it was a fitting job...

FULL STORY
NEWS June 19, 2018 - 11:00 am

Seven things to know about the Nunavut legislature’s spring sitting

MLAs get down to business—and go home with a new government leader

JANE GEORGE

The spring sitting of the Nunavut legislature wrapped up on June 14—and if you live in Nunavut, unless you had your head in a melting snowbank, you know that the MLAs ended this sitting with a series of unprecedented actions.

Here is a brief recap of the top highlights of this sitting, which...

FULL STORY
NEWS June 19, 2018 - 9:45 am

Nunavut community lockdown lifted, but incident still under investigation

The RCMP has crisis negotiators and its major crime unit in Sanikiluaq

NUNATSIAQ NEWS

(Updated 4:35 p.m.)

Nunavut RCMP lifted a lockdown in the community of Sanikiluaq Tuesday afternoon.

Early June 19, police had issued a warning for residents of the Baffin community of 900 to stay indoors or seek shelter, while officers dealt with a critical situation they said was unfolding in...

FULL STORY
NEWS June 19, 2018 - 8:30 am

Iqaluit city council reaches a compromise for skateboarders

"I am in favour of removing the curling rink’s surface from this building … so we can turn it into a more used facility"

COURTNEY EDGAR

After a fight by skateboard advocates to keep Iqaluit’s skate park open, city council has decided its fate, at least for this summer.

At their June 12 meeting, councillors passed a recommendation made by the recreation committee that would see the city install a smaller skate park than in previous...

FULL STORY
NEWS June 18, 2018 - 3:30 pm

Legal Ease, June 18

"In trust," an "important and a major part of dealing with a lawyer"

JAMES MORTON

Sometimes when you are working with a lawyer you will hear that money is being held “in trust.” Most people do not really understand what that means, but it is important and a major part of dealing with a lawyer.

Holding money in trust is something a lawyer does when the lawyer is the custodian of...

FULL STORY
NEWS June 18, 2018 - 1:29 pm

MLAs pass Nunavut’s cannabis legislation—the last in Canada

“We had limited time"

SARAH ROGERS

Nunavut MLAs finally passed Bill 7 last week—the territory’s Cannabis Act—making way for the legal, online purchase of small amounts of marijuana.

Earlier this month, the Senate of Canada passed Bill C-45, the federal government’s Cannabis Act with some amendments.

“This was a crucial milestone,”...

FULL STORY
NEWS June 18, 2018 - 11:00 am

Nunavut MLA calls for end to “language shaming”

"That is going to be the first step when we’re talking about rebuilding our language and keeping it alive"

JANE GEORGE

More Inuktut language training and less language shaming in Nunavut—these are among the key areas likely to be tackled by the new Savikataaq government.

“Even in this House myself here … I’ve felt little because I don’t speak Inuktitut. I know it’s not an excuse and it’s not even really a reason,”...

FULL STORY
NEWS June 18, 2018 - 8:00 am

Three Canadian Inuit vie to lead ICC-Canada

ICC-Canada seeks new Inuit Circumpolar Council president, VP

NUNATSIAQ NEWS

When delegates to the Inuit Circumpolar Council head to the annual general assembly in Utqiaġvik, Alaska next month and vote for a new executive, they will have a choice of three Canadians who want lead the Canadian arm of the organization that represents Inuit internationally until 2022.

The call...

FULL STORY
NEWS June 15, 2018 - 4:45 pm

No single reason for non-confidence motion that saw Nunavut premier depart, MLAs say

“People will never really understand why. I understand they are upset about it”

BETH BROWN

In a non-confidence vote and ensuing leadership forum in which Nunavut’s new premier Joe Savikataaq was elected, Nunavut MLAs made it clear yesterday that they didn’t want the Aggu MLA Paul Quassa to hold the highest-ranking position in Nunavut’s government.

The June 14 vote saw 16 members of...

FULL STORY
NEWS June 15, 2018 - 4:30 pm

New Nunavut premier shuffles cabinet

Former premier Paul Okalik no longer in charge of devolution

NUNATSIAQ NEWS

At the end of a tumultuous week, Premier Joe Savikataaq announced changes to executive council portfolios late Friday, less than 24 hours after he took over as premier from Aggu MLA Paul Quassa.

The changes mean David Akeeagok, MLA for Quttiktuq, is the new deputy premier and minister of economic...

FULL STORY
NEWS June 15, 2018 - 3:05 pm

Kuujjuaq man faces first-degree murder charge in woman’s death

Randy Koneak, 20, to appear in court June 21

NUNATSIAQ NEWS

A 20-year-old Kuujjuaq man faces a charge of first-degree murder in the June 12 death of a 28-year-old woman.

Randy Koneak was arrested June 13 and formally charged June 14 with the death of Chloé Labrie. He remains in detention in Amos.

The death of Labrie, a medical technician at Kuujjuaq’s...

FULL STORY
NEWS June 15, 2018 - 12:26 pm

What you read on Nunatsiaq.com from June 3 to June 10

MLAs' dissatisfaction in the ledge foreshadows this week's revolt

NUNATSIAQ NEWS

Many Nunatsiaq News readers will have trouble even recalling what took place last week in the news after the events of this week in the Nunavut legislature.

These included the notice of motion for the removal of Paul Quassa, MLA for Aggu and then premier, the passing of this motion in the house...

FULL STORY
NEWS June 15, 2018 - 10:35 am

Role-playing computer game could combat mental illness in Nunavut

New Zealand-made therapy game gets redesign through feedback from Inuit teens

BETH BROWN

Who knew computer games could help with mental health?

This summer, youth in six Nunavut communities are working with researchers from York University to redesign a computer game that teaches coping methods for combatting depression (among other skills) to make it Nunavut-specific.

The...

FULL STORY
Annie Akoak picks up some gloves to use to clean up around her Iqaluit neighbourhood of Legoland on the Apex Road June 22.  Iqaluit residents and staff from the city's different organizations were out in full force Friday morning to lend a hand at Iqaluit's 2018 community clean up. (PHOTO BY BETH BROWN)
Annie Akoak picks up some gloves to use to clean up around her Iqaluit neighbourhood of Legoland on the Apex Road June 22. Iqaluit residents and staff from the city's different organizations were out in full force Friday morning to lend a hand at Iqaluit's 2018 community clean up. (PHOTO BY BETH BROWN)