Nunatsiaq News
NEWS: Nunavut January 16, 2004 - 1:41 pm

With Thompson gone, Brown tries again

"This time around we're much more organized," says Rankin contender



After biding her time for five long years, Rankin Inlet’s Levinia Brown is making a play for the seat she narrowly lost to Manitok Thompson in 1999.

Thompson won the Rankin Inlet South-Whale Cove riding by just 13 votes in February 1999.

With Thompson out of the picture this time around, Brown is confident she can take the seat. As of Nunatsiaq News press-time this week, Brown was the only candidate to have been nominated in the riding.

“I lost by 13 last time. This time around we’re much more organized, and it’s not like I’m new to the big picture of politics. I gained some experience from the last round. The feeling has always been there since I campaigned house to house. A majority of support is still there,” she said in an interview this week.

Brown served as mayor of Rankin Inlet from 1989 to 1991, and, more recently as hamlet councillor and deputy mayor.

“I’ve always been interested in the Nunavut government, helping shape it and forming it,” she said.

“A lot of people have approached me in the past [about running in the territorial election] because I’m involved in politics a lot, local politics. So I have a lot of support out there.”

Trained as a classroom assistant and nursing assistant, she said education and health care are her priorities in this election. Those two issues are combined in the proposed new regional health centre for Rankin Inlet - in the services it will provide and the training residents must receive if they are to eventually work there.

“The regional hospital that’s being built, that’s going to be a very heavy topic - making sure that the funding is committed for the future, for not just nurses and doctors, but for all staff like lab and x-ray technicians, custodial workers and kitchen workers,” she said.

“And, looking down the road, what type of programs are going to be offered there? Is there going to be training for nurses’ aids and nurses?”

Though she has worked closely on the hospital project as a hamlet councillor, she said it is ultimately a territorial responsibility, and one of the key issues in the community - though it’s not the only one.

“I know there’s very many issues out there. I’m sure there will be more ideas after I talk to a lot of people.”

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