Nunavik lifts restrictions on alcohol sales, shortens curfew

Committee in discussions on how to gradually re-open region

As of May 13, Nunavimmiut should be home between the hours of 11 p.m. and 4 a.m. (File photo)

By Sarah Rogers

Updated on May 15 at 11:50 a.m.

Officials in Nunavik are starting to ease restrictions put in place to protect the region against COVID-19, starting with a shortened curfew and easier access to alcohol, the Kativik Regional Government announced this week.

Co-op stores in both Puvirnituq and Kuujjuaq are now permitted to sell beer and wine five days a week, from Monday through Friday. Sales are limited to a single litre of wine or 12 cans of beer per person, the KRG said on Friday, May 15.

In late March, the Kuujjuaq co-op began limiting sales to three days a week, while the Puvirnituq store stopped sales altogether, in an effort to reduce the “harm associated with heavy drinking in the context of the risks of COVID-19 transmission in Nunavik.”

Nunavimmiut can also make alcohol orders from southern retailers again from Monday through Friday, although Northern Villages reserve the right to set limits on the amount of alcohol residents can order.

“If you [use] alcohol, drink with moderation and responsibly,” the KRG said in a May 15 news release. “These new directives will be revised if needed.”

With no remaining cases of COVID-19 in the region, and longer hours of daylight, the regional government has also shortened the length of the night-time curfew imposed on Nunavik’s 14 communities.

As of May 13, Nunavimmiut should be at home between the hours of 11 p.m. and 4 a.m., the KRG announced this week. That’s a few hours less than the previous curfew, which ran from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m.

The curfew does not apply to harvesters.

The Kativik Regional Police Force will continue to enforce the curfew hours in co-operation with Northern Villages, the KRG said this week. The police have not indicated how many Nunavimmiut have been penalized for breaking those conditions.

The Nunavik Regional Emergency Preparedness Advisory Committee, along with Nunavik mayors, have been in discussion this week on how to gradually re-open the region, including inter-community travel.

Nunavimmiut can expect an update during the last week of May, when the KRG’s regional council is set to meet.

Addition: Information from the Kativik Regional Government about beer and wine sales has been added to this story.

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(9) Comments:

  1. Posted by Not a curfew on

    That’s retarded. Calling that a curfew. Some of these decision markers should be examined at the local hospital or sent south for evaluation. Briefly in English mayor. I mean just look at the time, 11 til 4 in the morning. My god, what will the kids do now? what will curfew defiant people do,? they won’t get any sleep at all. Even the hunting and fishing times are lesser, as we can only hunt outside of curfew hours, as before we had no restrictions as hunters and fishers. Crazy time with idiot decisions if you ask me. Briefly in English.

  2. Posted by Confusing on

    The message about harvesters exempted as by this news article is not the same as stated on the Nunavik board of health and social services site, which states that we are allow to hunt and fish outside of curfew hours. This is not clear. As far as any hunting and fishing goes, theses hours from 11 to 4 am might see us all asleep at the blind or camp, but I’m up at daylight sometimes getting ready for the geese. Of course no hunting in the dark, even dangerous, but did pull my net in the dark before , just saying for confusion of the message

  3. Posted by Nunabuzzard on

    Some if not all Mayors and council members at the majority are inching toward getting beer & wine stores for the communities by telling the public that communities with bars, beer & wine stores are showing statistically that their people are improving their excess to hard liquor because of the beer & wine availability. Less drinking of hard liquor has saved their push to get alcohol to the villages and say less domestic violence is seen. Get real please, how violent deaths are going to happen at an alarming rate, families will suffer with children taking most of the cost of decay of our irresponsible behavior and abuse of alcohol. Selfish leaders are doing the most damage. Take another couple of decades before talking about free access of alcohol. Right now Look to our elders advise which is still the best so far.

  4. Posted by It’s the extreme on

    It’s the extreme drinking that got us in trouble. People got to drink in moderation and save a few beers for the next day to enjoy outside on the patio or cabin whatever. There’s too many people still drinking and driving, and the police needs to do more patrols and take away the vehicle.

  5. Posted by It wasn’t long enough on

    It was a short lived break for us and the police, just what Nunavik needed.

    Now we understand that less alcohol means less trouble. Crime rate went down; less yelling and drunks stumbling around. I guess everything will be back to normal and our mind state will be is
    covid-19 Is a thing from the past.

    • Posted by Amazing times on

      My pictured memory of the curfew was like this: as soon as the curfew was put in place, the defiance started immediately. There were some kids in disobedience, but most were immature adults out and about , just because they’re weren’t suppose to by the curfew. Let’s ask the police to release the numbers of intervention they had to control the defiance. Now that the curfew is really no longer much of a curfew, still a few disobedience kids out, but much less of the immature adults, even thou there are some. You see, it brings the immaturity to the forefront. A great test of human discipline that tells so much about strength and weaknesses. As far a booze restrictions, it’s people own fault that some authority got to make laws as such for the lack of control with 2 or 3 otherwise cold beers.

  6. Posted by Charlie and the premier on

    Let’s look at a few things here, directly related to the issues at hand. Charlie watt would have been more appropriate if he questioned the reasons for restrictions of alcohol in Nunavik. Hey Charlie, allowing the Quebec government to tell Inuit what amount of booze they can buy? The mine opened was an issue of decision by health authorities, and not unlike other areas of Quebec. The alcohol restrictions are not else where in Quebec like in Nunavik , Charlie. Now for the Quebec premier: did anyone see him wearing a face mask, karma is alive and well, the muslins must love it, as many non muslins do too. It’s called karma.

    • Posted by Judge with face cover, half one. on

      I can see some Quebec judge now in his lonely court room, wearing his face mask, telling people to remove their face mask.

  7. Posted by Lifts restrictions but still restricted on

    Are the restrictions made by Inuit or are they made from the white government? That’s a good question if you ask me. But whatever or who ever, it may be a justified rule. No one wants to have to be told in what they can buy or drink. So, what’s happening? Well, it may have more to do with extreme behaviour that’s abusive. I’m just saying, what don you think? Is it because of truck loads of drunks going around after purchasing beer, throwing empty cans out the window, and putting life in danger with drunk driving ? is it because of spousal abuse? Child abuse? What motivates the powers to be to make those rules. And to get away with
    It without a protest. The next time we see such behaviour in drunks, should we report them or protest that they be cut off from booze? Something to think about as you have your beer, and witness idiots having theirs.

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