Housing wait lists a burden for youth


The long-standing concern over the lack of housing in Nunavik surfaced at Makivik Corp.’s annual general meeting held earlier this month in Kangirsuk.

Willie Kumarluk of Umiujaq said many people in his community who are on waiting list for years have given up hope of ever getting a home and have moved to other communities.

“Youth have to live with their parents,” youth delegate Jonathan Epoo told the meeting. “Here we try to promote autonomy, but it seems as if we are contradicting the philosophy we are trying to preach.”

Billy Weetaltuk, an elder from Chisasibi, said Inuit in his community have a tough time getting and maintaining the houses Makivik built specifically for the 100 or so Inuit who live in Chisasibi.

Makivik president Pita Aatami said Makivik will continue “to construct houses and to try to find money to continue the [housing] program.”

However, he said that under the corporation’s agreement on social housing, Makivik’s role is building houses, not distributing them.

Makivik is building 30 new social housing duplexes in Nunavik in 2006 under its renewed, five-year $20-million housing agreement with the federal and provincial governments.

Makivik Construction will put up 13 duplexes in Inukjuak, 10 in Kangirsuk, three in Aupaluk and five in Ivujivik, including some units built for the Kativik Regional Police Force.

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