Nunatsiaq News
NEWS: Nunavut May 02, 2018 - 2:30 pm

What you read on Nunatsiaq.com from April 22 to April 29

Inquest into baby's death leads the top five stories of the week

NUNATSIAQ NEWS
The most popular photo on the Nunatsiaq News Facebook page last week shows Eemeelayou Arnaquq competing in the Toonik Tyme seal skinning contest in Iqaluit last weekend. Jimmy Nowdlak won the three-person competition and Imoona Karpak also participated. This year's spring festival ran from April 12 to April 22. (PHOTO BY BETH BROWN)
The most popular photo on the Nunatsiaq News Facebook page last week shows Eemeelayou Arnaquq competing in the Toonik Tyme seal skinning contest in Iqaluit last weekend. Jimmy Nowdlak won the three-person competition and Imoona Karpak also participated. This year's spring festival ran from April 12 to April 22. (PHOTO BY BETH BROWN)

The top story of the week on Nunatsiaq.com gave insight into the opening day of last week’s inquest into the death of Baby Amelia Annie Leah Onalik-Keyookta.

The baby, aged about four and a half months, died on July 29, 2015, one day after the Nunavut Department of Family Services had apprehended her from her parents.

A former Nunavut social worker testified April 23 that she apprehended the baby after finding thick marijuana smoke in her home.

When the mother, Loanna Keyookta, next held her baby on the following day, the child would be dead.

“She was not breathing when I saw her,” Keyookta said April 23 in a witness testimony given at the Nunavut Court of Justice, during the first day of the five-day inquest.

The inquest, presided over by Northwest Territories coroner Garth Eggenberger, wrapped up last Friday.

The jury’s verdict stated there was no known reason to explain how or why the baby died while in the care of the Government of Nunavut’s Department of Family Services.

But there are ways the GN can prevent a child from dying in its care again, the six-person jury said in 22 recommendations attached to their verdict.

These recommendations include hiring more Inuktut-speaking social workers and translators, training foster parents in safe sleeping practices for babies, and educating parents about the damage that cannabis smoke can inflict on young children.

The second most-read story of the past week describes how a copy of Alethea Arnaquq-Baril’s 2016 documentary Angry Inuk was sent to the offices of NBC’s The Ellen Show.

Tanya Tagaq’s record company, Six Shooter Records, decided to send the DVD on April 9 after a discussion erupted on social media about the impacts of banning the importation of seal products.

On April 6, India passed a ban on seal skin imports that was met with celebratory posts on social media from animal rights activists, including Ellen DeGeneres of The Ellen Show and People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, better known as PETA.

That prompted Six Shooter Records to deliver the DVD to DeGeneres. There’s been no word yet about whether she’s watched the film.

Another top-read story, according to Google Analytics, which tracks online traffic on Nunatsiaq.com, concerned a request by the Montreal police to seek possible victims of an alleged sex offender, known to many Inuit in the city.

Anyone who believes they may have been a victim of Oba Femi Toussaint, 40, or knows anyone who may have been a victim or witness, is asked to inform their local Montreal police station or call 911.


Oba Femi Toussaint, in a photo furnished the Montreal police

Also in the news:

Three Nunavik youth were injured in an early morning all-terrain collision: Early Wednesday morning, Kativik Regional Police Force officers were out doing a regular patrol in Kuujjuaq when a four-wheeler collided with their vehicle.

A coroner’s report into the death of llutak Anautak suggests the 19-year-old was angered after someone called the police about him and told officers the teen had no mother or father. Last June, Anauatak went on to stab eight people, killing three of them, before police shot and killed him.

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