MMIW inquiry must consider Nunavut’s circumstances: Taptuna
GN sends status of women minister to Winnipeg roundtable
Nunavut Premier Peter Taptuna used the opening of the legislature’s winter session to reiterate his government’s support for an inquiry into missing and murdered Indigenous women, and to call for an Inuit-specific focus.
“No woman or person should suffer from violence,” Taptuna told the legislature Feb .24.
“An inquiry needs to take into account Nunavut’s circumstance, which differs from other jurisdictions,” he said. “We need to look at the root causes around systematic domestic violence against women in Nunavut, and include those who may go missing.”
The beginning of the winter session corresponds with the start of a national roundtable on the issue hosted in Winnipeg this week, which Nunavut’s minister responsible for the Status of Women, Monica Ell-Kanayuk, will attend.
Canada’s minister of Indigenous Affairs, Carolyn Bennett, visited Iqaluit last month as part of cross-country consultations, to gather input from families on how the inquiry should be developed.
“I support those families and will continue to consider this a priority of this government,” Taptuna said. “As premier, I believe that this delicate, complex issue needs the concentrated commitment of multiple levels of government.”
In addition to Ell-Kanayuk, Taptuna has also appointed Nunavut’s justice minister Paul Okalik as a lead on the file.
Despite Taptuna’s words of support, the Government of Nunavut was among the last in Canada to come out in public support of an inquiry.
During the last winter sitting of the legislature, Nunavut’s former status of women minister said an inquiry might cost too much money.
The second national roundtable will gather federal ministers, Indigenous leaders, provincial and territorial premiers and ministers and families of missing or murdered women in Winnipeg Feb. 24 to Feb. 26.