Nunavut MLA presses GN on family violence, women’s council
Abrupt staff changes disrupt Status of Women Council
(updated Feb. 27, 4:30 p.m.)
More resources should be put into preventing Nunavut’s high rates of intimate partner violence against Inuit women, Nattilik MLA Jeannie Ugyuk said during question period in the legislative assembly Feb. 26.
Ugyuk, who cited a recent Statistics Canada report that found Nunavut’s rates of violence against women were 13 times the national rate, and twice the rate of the Northwest Territories, asked what the government is currently doing to deal with the violence.
Ugyuk said she wanted to know “what specific support is directed to addressing domestic violence.”
She also asked questions about the current state of the Qulliit Nunavut Status of Women Council and the long-delayed family violence prevention strategy.
But, responding to the question, Monica Ell, minister responsible for Qulliit Nunavut Status of Women Council, said she has “yet to receive some information about the activities of the [council].”
‘There are different people who work on these issues, and I’ll make sure that I give you the updated information as soon as I can,” Ell said.
Uqgyuk then wanted to know whether Qulliit is working with the Government of Nunavut “to develop its long-awaited family violence strategy,” Ugyuk said.
Ell said that the council had a “staff turnover” — a likely reference to the departure of the council’s last executive director, Sandra Inutiq, who served for only six months last year before taking a job as the Nunavut languages commissioner.
But Ell promised to report back on the strategy’s status later this year.
Ugyuk also wanted to know how many members now sit on the council and who the current president is.
Ell responded that there are “quite a few” members, but that the government is looking for two people to fill two vacant board positions.