GN boosts services for transgender and non-binary Nunavummiut

Funding also announced to help victims of family violence

Health Minister John Main said Thursday that the territory will pay for transition services for eligible transgender Nunavummiut. (File photo)

By David Venn
Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

The Government of Nunavut will pay for mental health services and transition treatments for transgender and non-binary Nunavummiut, Health Minister John Main announced this week in the legislative assembly.

The Health Department is partnering with the Metropolitan Centre of Surgery in Montreal to provide the transition services.

“The Department of Health is committed to providing medically necessary health care that aims to address the mental health of Nunavummiut when it comes to sexual health,” Main said on Thursday.

The department will cover the costs for Nunavummiut who “meet the criteria,” but did not elaborate on what the criteria is.

The move will significantly improve the mental health of transgender and non-binary people, said Main, citing the Centre for Suicide Prevention, which says between 22 and 43 per cent of transgender people have attempted suicide in their lifetime.

“Transition-related health services are life-saving health care,” he said.

Also during Thursday’s sitting, Justice Minister David Akeeagok announced the Legal Services Board of Nunavut has hired two lawyers to provide support for victims of domestic abuse and sexual assault.

“These lawyers will be … available to victims to help them understand their rights, help them access services and guide them through the often intimidating court process,” Akeeagok said.

The jobs are being funded through the federal government’s National Action Plan to End Gender-Based Violence.

Akeeagok said the money will also allow the legal services board to hold public information sessions and workshops on family violence with the funding from the federal government.

“The Department of Justice believes this new initiative will be a valuable tool to support victims of family violence and sexual assault,” he said.

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(16) Comments:

  1. Posted by Northern Inuit on

    this is great news.

    we need to support all people from our home land, Nunavut is a welcoming place and there is no reason in any day for anyone to be left out.

  2. Posted by Umingmak on

    There’s a horrific housing crisis, but this is this government’s priority? Yikes.

    • Posted by 867 on

      There is also a horrific suicide crisis in Nunavut, and the transgender community is affected more than any other group on the planet.

    • Posted by Let B Real on

      To be fair, we rightly expect governments handle more than one issue at a time.

    • Posted by Federal Money on

      Federal Money

      • Posted by 867 on

        Just about everything in Nunavut is “Federal Money”

        • Posted by Northern dude on

          More like all money comes from the federal government for the whole of Nunavut to operate.

    • Posted by SNOWL on

      We should not deny people health care just because they are probably ALSO struggling with finding adequate housing.

  3. Posted by Sigh on

    Transition treatments should be paid for by the person wanting the transition. Not with tax dollars.

  4. Posted by How was this decided? on

    Was a legitimate procurement run for these services to be provided in Montreal?

  5. Posted by Caribou Hunter on

    Maybe more pressing issues for the GN since this affects a very small population that need this service?

    • Posted by CaribouHunter2 on

      Maybe hidden due to stigma. There are many other pressing issues beside this one. Good of them to start somewhere.

  6. Posted by Andy on

    Your comments are disrespectful, selfish and embarrassing. If you were raised based on IQ values, or not, respect and support other humans and their needs.

  7. Posted by Uvanga on

    Can i get my fertility treament covered too. This wouldve really helped my mental welness to be able to have a baby.

    • Posted by 867 on

      We looked at doing this years ago when my partner found out she was infertile. It would have cost $30,000 for the treatment alone and Medical Travel refused to reimburse the flights to Winnipeg. All-in-all for the treatment, hotels and flights it would have nearly over $50,000. The GN doesn’t care about this though. Maybe one day fertility treatment will be seen as a human right.

  8. Posted by Just wondering on

    Can the GN say how many suicides in Nunavut were transition-related?


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