Nunatsiaq News
NEWS: Nunavut July 11, 2018 - 5:16 pm

Nunavut government reboots human resources department

GN cites Inuit employment as reason for resurrecting HR

Nunavut’s government announced on July 11 that it will bring back its Department of Human Resources. (FILE PHOTO)
Nunavut’s government announced on July 11 that it will bring back its Department of Human Resources. (FILE PHOTO)

The Government of Nunavut announced today that it is bringing back its Department of Human resources, six years after that department was dissolved in 2012.

“The creation of a more targeted department echoes the direction of full caucus, and is an important first step forward,” Nunavut’s new minister responsible for the public service George Hickes said in a July 11 release from the Department of Finance. 

Up until now, human resources were dealt with through the Departments of Finance and Executive and Intergovernmental Affairs.

The release cites “Inuit employment planning” as a priority for the new department.

This announcement comes shortly after a portfolio shuffle that saw Hickes made head of finance.

That shuffle happened just days after Hickes was voted into cabinet by acclamation when Arviat South MLA Joe Savikataaq became Nunavut’s new premier following the ousting of then-premier and member for Aggu Paul Quassa.

As a regular MLA for Iqaluit-Tasiluk, Hickes, along with Iqaluit-Manirajak MLA Adam Lightstone, championed the creation of a new human resources department, and said civil servants shouldn’t feel intimidated in their workplaces.

Pushback seen from regular members over a lack of a human resources department within the GN isn’t new.

In June of 2016, Nunavut MLAs voted to create a public service commission to handle staff recruitment, hiring, training and workplace wellness, even though at the time all of cabinet was against it.

Today, the GN is saying that its first step, following the resurrection of a human resources department, will be to plan, staff and budget for the new body.

“A planning team will be tasked with ensuring that the transition is smooth and effortless, and has as little impact as possible on employees, and government programs and services,” the July 11 release said.

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(9) Comments:

#1. Posted by Ms.T on July 11, 2018

Finally some smart people! I hope this slows down hiring friends and family!

#2. Posted by Observer on July 11, 2018

It won’t make a difference if they don’t get rid of the harassers and build from there…lots of work required as well as ongoing transparency

#3. Posted by Sad on July 12, 2018

Some are hired off the street I know 2 people that were hired in the department I work in as they are good friends with the manager and she doesn’t follow the Inuit priority hiring hopefully this will be caught!  Please bring in the right people for this department!

#4. Posted by Northern Inuit on July 12, 2018

put an end to nepotism now, stop work place bullying, drain the tundra!


seriously, a step in the right direction and we thank you for reviving this Department.

#5. Posted by hmmm on July 12, 2018

We could create a million departments…..the issue is the actual ideas and culture within the GN, not which Department that hires…...Harassment, Nepotism, a lack of accountability and incompetence….Maybe the Department of Human Resources can fix that, but who will be working the Department? and Running it? Same people who are in those positions??? This just seems like a way for the Government to look like they are doing something.

#6. Posted by Good luck on July 12, 2018

It’s very reassuring to see the HR is separated but there are long standing bullies in that department who are abusing the powers and harnessing employees with suspension, fact findings and dismissals with their judgemental, blind and onesided decisions.

Hope the Minister looks into all these onesided investigations done by the HR , how many employees gone through mental break down with stress leave, how many wrongfully terminated??

Hope atlease they make right choice and go through proper highering process and not getting employees from Legion and store house after wings night or getting all family members into the same departments with influence. Stope this niptisum and provide employeement to Inuit, give an opportunity to reduce poverty.

#7. Posted by Jim on July 16, 2018

I think the highest priority for the “new” HR department is to implement the 2010 Office of the Auditor Generals report on the GN human Resource Capacity and training.  This is why the HR department was dissolved.  Because the unnamed politician of the day knew that the GN would not be able to implement its highly critical recommendations.  And without a HR department, no one to point the finger at.

#8. Posted by McDonald's Big Mac Degree on July 18, 2018

I see too many Caucasian people with McDonald’s Big Mac Degree who got GN management jobs up here, you are tempting Inuit who have opened their eyes and mind to fight this corruption that is rampant in the GN. I mean are you not afraid of losing your retirement plan and your estate in the south when many more Inuit open their eyes and mind to get what is ours back with the book up law which is used in Canada, I mean take a look a what “Nunavut” phrase means, our land

#9. Posted by Max on July 20, 2018

#8. Are you saying that “Nunavut” which means “Our Land” does not apply to everyone?

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