Nunavut MP releases report on ‘deplorable’ housing conditions

‘Promises don’t get rid of mould … empathy doesn’t fix leaking pipes,’ says Mumilaaq Qaqqaq

Nunavut MP Mumilaaq Qaqqaq released a housing report on Thursday, based on her visits to homes across Nunavut over three weeks in the fall. This photo was taken at a home in Kugaaruk. (Photo provided by Mumilaaq Qaqqaq)

By Mélanie Ritchot

Fourteen people living in a four-bedroom home. Water seeping through floor boards. A child taken from a family because their mould-ridden home was deemed unfit.

These are some of the stories Nunavut’s MP heard first-hand during a three-week housing tour in the fall.

Mumilaaq Qaqqaq said in an interview that the goal of the report, released Thursday, is to raise awareness and to humanize the housing crisis in Nunavut, an issue typically represented through statistics.

In the fall, she visited Taloyoak, Gjoa Haven, Kugaaruk, Coral Harbour, Naujaat, Rankin Inlet, Arviat and Baker Lake to see the effects of the territory’s housing crisis first-hand. Overcrowded housing, crumbling walls, broken windows and doors, and black mould were common themes.

  • Homes across Nunavut are overcrowded, forcing people to sleep on couches or on mattresses on the floor in tight spaces. (Photo provided by Mumilaaq Qaqqaq's office)

Qaqqaq said she saw the most mould in homes in Taloyoak and Gjoa Haven.

In one, a child who became sick from the mould was placed in foster care in the south because the home was deemed unfit, she wrote.

“No parent should ever have to lose their child because of a government’s inability to properly build and maintain housing,” Qaqqaq wrote.

The mould issue was also present in Kugaaruk, with one woman telling Qaqqaq she found maggots in her floor when she tried to clean up mould herself, since she couldn’t afford more extensive repairs.

Wait-lists for new housing units and repairs that span years were common themes across the communities, as well as overcrowding.

In Taloyoak, 112 people are on the waiting list for social housing, and one family told Qaqqaq they had been waiting for a unit for more than 13 years.

In Coral Harbour, Qaqqaq said 130 people of the population of 900 are waiting for housing and 43 of them are currently homeless.

A new unit hasn’t been built in that community in over five years and having to depend on flying material in from the south makes renovations and repairs a challenge, she said.

The typical home she visited in Gjoa Haven had six people living in only three bedrooms, Qaqqaq wrote in the report.

One home, where a child is living with tuberculosis, has been in desperate need of mould and sewage remediation for years, but the only renovation done in the past decade was a new coat of paint.

In Naujaat, Qaqqaq visited 10 homes and said every single one had problems with mould and overcrowding. Other common issues were sagging ceilings and wonky floors, she wrote.

There were 14 people living in a four-bedroom home she visited. In another, she met a grandmother who slept on the couch of a three-generation home since there is no other room.

In Kugaaruk, the MP said almost all units she visited had problems with the windows — which wouldn’t close properly and had ice and snow build-up in the cold months — making it difficult for homes to retain heat.

In newer units in the community, many didn’t have back doors and people were concerned they couldn’t escape if there was a fire, she said.

The Nunavut Housing Corporation can’t keep up with the high demand for repairs and there is only one contractor in the community, which has about 140 public housing units waiting for repairs, she wrote.

About 37 per cent of Nunavut’s population lives in homes needing major repairs, are not the right size, or are not affordable, according to the Nunavut government’s 2020 Status of Housing report, published in September.

Mumilaaq Qaqqaq visits a home in Gjoa Haven to listen to a resident, who is out of frame for privacy reasons. (Photo provided by Mumilaaq Qaqqaq’s office)

Qaqqaq also described a “severe lack of access to safe space for women in the North.” She described meeting a woman who had little choice but to live with her nephew who has abused her physically and verbally, while they are both on a wait-list for their own housing units. Her other option is homelessness.

In a past interview, the MP described people having to live in homes where loved ones have committed suicide or been murdered.

Throughout the tour, Inuit were always willing to open their homes to her and share their experiences, but would apologize about the state of their homes or say they were embarrassed, Qaqqaq said.

In the communities, sign-up sheets for the home visits were posted at hamlet offices. During community visits Qaqqaq also met with leaders like mayors, MLAs and housing managers.

In an interview, Qaqqaq said she visited more than 100 homes in person.

The MP mentions in her report that her stress leave at the end of 2020 was directly related to what she saw during her housing tour.

“My people need help … they need that help now,” she wrote.

She said the federal government is at fault for Nunavut’s housing crisis and needs to increase funding for housing organizations across the territory and listen to local solutions.

In her report, Qaqqaq spoke about the effects of colonization and forced relocations that brought many changes to the Inuit way of life, including moving from living in tents and iglus to permanent settlements.

“It was clear that some people weren’t aware of caring for a home or navigating systems,” she said. “Not knowing these kinds of things is not the fault of Inuit.”

“Money for remediation and new units is the only solution,” she wrote. “Promises don’t get rid of mould … empathy doesn’t fix leaking pipes.”

The MP recently announced her plans to seek a second term as the territory’s voice in the House of Commons.

“I haven’t had enough time at all,” she said in an interview, adding that she plans to address issues like suicide prevention, job opportunities and childcare spaces, but needs to start with basic human rights first.

“We can’t tackle that until we make sure all Inuit are clothed, fed and have somewhere safe to sleep every night.”

The MP is hosting a virtual public forum on Friday at 7 p.m. to discuss the report.

The report will be released in Inuktitut and French in the coming days, an NDP press release stated.

Qaqqaq.housingReport.2021 by NunatsiaqNews on Scribd

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(70) Comments:

  1. Posted by Real and honest conversations on

    Can we be real when we talk about housing.

    Why do we have a housing criss?
    How much do tentant damages take away from the pool of money to renovate empty houses?
    Does the current rent scale promote home ownership as it was intended?
    Are kids having kids affecting future housing needs?
    Does the GN need to get out of housing altogether ( here is a house now it is yours to maintain)?
    Can you access the tentant to owner program?
    What is the cost of a social housing unit vs a GN unit on avg?
    Are there alternative building options?

    So of these are tough questions that make people uncomfortable but there are real factors not being talked about. We only see the sensational items like GN workers. You have to look at all sides of the problem to fix it.

    • Posted by hermann kliest on

      Governments at both level knew exactly what they were building, look at the housing in CanBay. High Arctic Research Station units compare to public housing. Government know how to build houses for the arctic use after all, it’s just that government and nay sayers just don’t give a damn about inhabitants of the arctic. suppressed and under thumps. that’s the way to keep the natives under control.

      • Posted by Redbrew on

        Even if the govt improved all the standards for buildings that is no protection against kicked in doors and busted windows.

      • Posted by Cambaymiut on

        I’ve been in government-built housing units. Have you? There are units that were built at the same time, sometimes even units in the same building, built the same way by the same material by the same people, and maintained by the same people. And yet one can be neat, well-maintained and homey while the unit next to it has broken windows, barely functional doors (interior doors often with holes kicked in them), drywall ripped off, fixtures ripped out, and generally be a complete disaster that gets highlighted in a report. The only difference between those units are the tenants.

  2. Posted by Reality on

    ““No parent should ever have to lose their child because of a government’s inability to properly build and maintain housing,” Qaqqaq wrote.”

    It’s not really the government’s job to build or look after houses or kids. Government doesn’t control the number of kids people have, the people themselves do.

    Government is NOT able to keep up with the number of people having more kids than they can afford to look after. They never were and they never will be. If Inuit want modern houses and modern lives, they have to learn to build and maintain their houses, generate incomes that can pay for them, and not have more kids than they can afford to look after with the wages they earn in paid employment. That’s true for every adult everywhere on planet earth. If you can’t look after yourself, there is no guarantee that others will be able to do everything you need done to be comfortably housed or fed, especially since they still have to look after themselves, too. Sometimes as well, you might have to move to a different place to find work, just like everyone else in the country and the world.

    That said, I can guarantee that no child was removed just because of mold. The story of neglect is always more complicated than that.

    • Posted by Why on

      Why should the Government provide housing? Your sense of entitlement is extraordinary.

      • Posted by Shut up on

        Why on… you say that Inuit are entitled, no we are not. When the government started forcing us into settlements in the 1950s they told the inuit then that if we moved into the houses we built that they would look after the inuit because Inuit were still living off the land. So that is why you think we are entitled, the government made a promise to Inuit and just like our native cousins in the south the government led and left us to try figure out on our own. We went from igloo to cell phone in less then 50 years. How well do you think you would have done?

        • Posted by Nuna-myths on

          Show us where in the NLCA, or elsewhere, that the Government of Canada promised Inuit free housing in perpetuity? This idea is a myth.

        • Posted by Get your facts straight ! ! on

          No one was promised houses forever. Building materials were supplied but a lot were
          stolen by greedy Inuit , which made other Inuit people suffer.
          I know because there was 12 of us in a small match box house.
          I am Inuit but so many Inuit people are greedy for things and rip off their own people.
          Our MP should show photos of the dominant families who get free machines all the time.
          Start blaming them for a change.

  3. Posted by Iglu on

    Some issues that contribute to what’s in the report are overcrowding, unqualified maintainers looking after the maintenance on the homes, lack of proper training and apprenticeships in the north, homeowners who don’t know how to react to certain things in the home like high moisture, people in homes who turn off their air exchanger or do not use their kitchen or bathroom fans, people in homes who intentionally break windows and cause other damage to the insides of their homes, underfunded property management companies or housing associations, and more. Don’t only blame this on your government. The answer lies within the people of your territory. The people in the homes need to put in the extra effort in taking better care of their homes, the workers in the housing associations need to put more effort into going for training and becoming qualified house maintainers, the government needs to provide better design of homes, some mothers need to stop having babies if they have no way to provide an adequate home for them (maybe have one instead of five), and there’s more. Right now what I am seeing is that the will of the people is just not there. We may have to go another 22 years until people open their eyes and see that the will to improve things must come from within, not always blaming the GN.

    • Posted by Oh IMa on

      Typical settler attitude blame the victims of government policy that keep Inuit down and out! This is all part of the systemic racism we face on a daily basis! If a country wants us to join their country then they should put in greater effort to make life better and put in the money to create infrastructure that most of non indigenous people enjoy and take for granted.

      • Posted by Let’s be real on

        It is not a settlers attitude more then the reality of the situation. If you beat the walls out of your house like the featured photo there is less money to fix up other houses.

      • Posted by Umm, Say What? on

        Join the country? We are part of the country, not separate from it. Your attitude does nothing to help Nunavummiut.

        I can understand why southern Canadians switch off when they hear attitudes such as yours.

      • Posted by Get Out Some on

        Whooo boy – where to start? I think that I’ll leave it with your understanding of the incredibly housing poverty in so much of this country is showing.

        Come with me to Sydney one day and I’ll take you around housing that is every bit as deplorable as what Mumilaq has highlighted.

        Housing poverty, particularly for welfare recipients, is a huge Canada-wide problem.

      • Posted by iWonder on

        Oh Ima, can you please shed some light on what you mean when you point to government policy that has victimized and kept Inuit down? You also say that Inuit face “systemic racism” on a daily basis. Can you give us an example of that too?

        I’ve noticed the very casual and reflexive use of these terms, which are lobbed into discussions a bit like grenades. Yet, as I see it, they are rarely fleshed out or grounded in something tangible. I know I would benefit from a better understanding of what it meant by them and how they play out in the real world.

        • Posted by Nunavut on

          You want examples read the poverty report for Nunavut. Out of the 2000 non Inuit that live in the Nunavut territory virtually none are unemployed or homeless, however Inuit in the territory are represented with around 22% working and have adequate housing. In the report it also states that there is systemic “issues” within the government that need to be addressed. The biggest reason Inuit are struggling is a direct result of colonization, Inuit have only been recognized by the Canadian government in 1984. Many of the settlements and communities have only excised since the 1950’s, Inuit traditionally did not live in settlements and never dealt with money, they survived off the land and were nomadic, there was no 9 to 5 jobs. Basically within 50 years the inuit went from igloo to cell phone. Some Inuit were able to adapt to the western life style that was imposed on them while others struggled so excuse me if it is taking them a little bit to catch up.
          The government forced Inuit into colonization and expected them to just fall in line and live the way they do, it is the Canadian governments fault that Inuit are failing to “assimilate” to the western life style. The Inuit are trying, give them some credit while they try to heal their culture and their people from the traumatic effects colonization and residential schools have had on them.

          • Posted by iWonder on

            Nunavut, thanks for responding. The disparate employment numbers you present do tell a story, but do they imply racism? Consider that the majority of non-Inuit who move here do so for work and arrive with a job in place. If they lose that they find work elsewhere if they can, or they probably leave. This skews any comparison in a certain direction.

            As for colonialism and cultural change, I agree with you these are huge challenges, and they aren’t going to go away. No one is disputing that and no one is disputing the harms inflicted in the past.

            As for poverty and larger scale disparities I would argue these largely are the product of different historical and cultural trajectories. You’ve outlined some of these. Do these imply racism? I don’t think they do, though I know that for many people today this link is considered self-evident.

            I won’t presume to tell you how to move forward from here, except to say dedicate yourself to learning, and get an education.

          • Posted by iWonder on

            Trying to respond, but as usual the gatekeepers at Nunatsiaq won’t allow it. Nunavut really needs a better place for the exchange of ideas, this one is hopelessly corrupted by activist editors.

            • Posted by Really? on

              Well, actually, I was just commenting to someone that I think this anonymous but moderated comment section in this online newspaper is actually good and necessary to support democracy and discussion because Nunavut is small and it is difficult to express oneself publicly; it is so easy for people to be berated and condemned publicly. There are comments here I strongly disagree with and others with which I agree, but I actually have found these comments sections pretty helpful to listen to different perspectives.

            • Posted by So Right on

              A real newspaper in Nunavut would be so refreshing!

  4. Posted by homeless in Nunavut on

    Ottawa has never provided the money needed.
    Can anyone give a realistic reason to expect that Ottawa will ever provide the money needed?
    If not, isn’t it time to stop waiting for Ottawa? What other solution can you think of, Mumilaaq?

    • Posted by Concerned Inuk on

      Your questions is “Can anyone give a realistic reason to expect that Ottawa will ever provide the money needed?”

      Your answer is “The right to adequate housing is a human right recognized in international human rights law as part of the right to an adequate standard of living. One of the first references to it is in article 25 (1) of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.”

      • Posted by Kilgore Trout on

        The Universal Declaration of Human Rights is an expression of values, it is not a treaty and not law in Canada.

      • Posted by Bonnie Osborne on

        This is also in the Canadian Housing Strategy Act, so it is already enshrined in Canadian statute law.

        • Posted by Infomation Request on

          Hi Bonnie, it would great if you would post a link so we can look it.


          • Posted by Patrick Sageaktook on

            Google, it’s a thing.

        • Posted by NotBonnie on

          Looks like it refers to international law:
          Not a right in the Canadian Constitution since as far as I know economic rights have not been included in it but at least recognition of the importance of housing to human dignity.

  5. Posted by BallyHoo on

    Looking at the holes punched in those walls I can’t help but ask, is there room in this discussion for the lack of respect and value people place on their own homes? Assigning blame on the federal government for this just doesn’t resonate.

    • Posted by BALI HAI ! on

      Very true, Bally Hoo,
      A very true situation in Nunavut is where people on committees are always given brand
      new houses, even when they have left there old house in a filthy mess, and have not
      paid rent for a long time. It has gone on for years !
      This is not the fault of the GN, but community bullies who have betrayed there own
      people for years ! They keep getting away with it.
      Anyone who talks about the great life in igloos, are full of it.
      Thank you to our M.P. for taking photos.

      • Posted by ttttooo true on

        BALI HAI: That’s the truth, the whole truth.

  6. Posted by Name withheld on

    Board members for the LHO were created to manage the Public Housing in each community, not Manage the staff so they need to be educated about their roles!!

    2nd the Tenant Relation Officers for the LHO need to educate the tenants in regards to maintaining their unit, ie preventing mold, ventilation system, heating during the summer, windows during the winter, that’s where annual visits maybe twice a year should take so they can see and visit the tenant to hear their concern also. All this needs to be implemented by the board and the Manager…

  7. Posted by DS on

    Mumilaaq – Did your study determine how much Housing Association time, money and resources are consumed by willful abuse and neglect by tenants?

    I know a bit about not-for-profit housing, having been on the board for some 10 years of a corporation which operates 95 units in two buildings. Our 95 units are serviced and maintained by one manager, one part time assistant, two full time and one part time maintenance and janitorial workers. Our units are in excellent condition. Our tenants are proud of their homes. At present, we have only one tenant who is abusing her tenancy; she is one of two tenants in rent arrears.

    • Posted by Name withheld on

      DS – The TD should be billed the tenant after the work has been repaired, if and when the payment cannot be made in full, a payment plan should be sign that is where the TRO comes in.

      In any case a work order, should not be ignored even if it is TD or if the Tenant has arrears with the LHO, LHO are obligated to ensure each unit is livable for the well being of the occupant.

      NHC deposit’s the operating grant each month to each LHO according to the number of staff and unit each LHO has to ensure all operations are meant, it is the LHO Manager’s positon to ensure TRO are doing their respectful duties, if they aren’t than the Manager should be questioned by the Board members.

      This is all in the Tenancy Act

    • Posted by More Info Plz on

      Interesting question, I would like to know if she met with any of the Housing Associations in any of the communities she visited? There have been several comments on related stories here that say she didn’t. If not, I wonder why that is?

  8. Posted by Pond on

    We get 3 new fiveplexes, and while building them i laughed that the design had a window right next to the front door. We would joke about how long the windows would last. Now they are 4 out of 5 boarded up. Lay off the booze people.

  9. Posted by Phil Connors on

    Is this Groundhogs Day?

  10. Posted by Facts on

    It is nice to see that some of the comments actually reflect facts, about vandalism, which by the way is clearly shown on the MP own pics. Ist pic; how to do blame anyone but occupant for damaged wiring, holes in walls, torn vapour barrier damaged insulation, other pics demolished vanity and countertop. There are tens of millions of dollars in damages each year all caused by occupants. Blame the government, sure why not, it’s easier than facing reality. Look at a couple of pics, mattress directly on floor, no air floor beneath, perfect harbinger for mold. Listen to some of the commenters, something that can’t be said very often, however in this case many are correct. Knock off the racism card, that has been played far to often. In any game when you play the same card or strategy too often the other players catch on. The system of public housing is unsustainable. How can a any agency build units at over 600,000.00 initial cost, spend 25,000.00 for each unit each year maintaining them, incur thousands of dollars of damage, receive 60.00 per month revenue from rent. By the way again, fact, that rent money comes from another gov. agency. How the hell is any of that government fault.

  11. Posted by articrick on

    Go take a look at the hallways in the “new” 33 Plex in Rankin inlet, didn’t take long for it to be abused.

    • Posted by Hi Neighbor on

      Dude, I live there… are you my neighbor?

  12. Posted by Fact check on

    “No new units in Coral Harbour in five years…” Fact: new units were constructed in 2017, 2018, and again scheduled for 2021, the average bid price for 2021 over 700,000.00 per unit. Don’t believe this, check the facts yourself, ask NHC,

  13. Posted by What on

    “Pond” – so a window located by a front door according to your philosophy is an invitation to break it. Perhaps the ultimate solution is no windows, no glass, That would prevent all breakage regardless of location.

    • Posted by No Moniker on

      I don’t think the point is that there is an invitation to break the window, but that the probability that something will be destroyed given discernible social patterns (in this case correlated with alcohol use), is not only obvious, but turns out to be true.

  14. Posted by Disappointment on

    I’ve been in many a social housing units (I lived in one before I bought a home – and truthfully I couldn’t care less what happened to the house) 80% of the problems are tenant inflicted. Smashed windows, holes kicked in the walls, doors that can’t shut properly, the list goes on. Sure there are cases of regular wear and tear and there are moister problems, but it costs housing an average of $26,000.00 to maintain a housing unit each and every year. As a home owner that understands and appreciates the operational costs I know that my costs are no where near that. I understand that letting my kids play hockey inside shooting hard pucks at the wall will cost me money to repair, I know that having my windows freeze open in the winter and then forcing them shut only to break cost me money. Stop with social housing and start building stronger home ownership programs. ALLOW US TO BUY OUR LOTS so we can get mortgages – stupid idiots that voted against this… idiots.
    My children’s can’t get into housing and they can’t buy a house – so I encourage them to move away as they enter the work force. The housing system is backwards and f’d up.

  15. Posted by Oscare on

    It’s called TENANT DAMAGE, lack of proper maintenance, old and small units that are no longer viable. When I was with NHC, they always talked about replacing the very old units with new ones, never done. Always building small multiplexes. I can go on and on, but you guys get the picture. There is a 3rd world country within Canada folks. Some people in Iran, Iraq, Africa have better housing then us

  16. Posted by A picture is worth a thousand words ! on

    The photos of the severe tenant damage prove that it is the fault of the people and not
    the G N.
    Thank you for taking the pictures M. Qaqquq. Long overdue !
    I would like to say there are many houses in Nunavut where people do keep houses clean
    and their children well cared for.

  17. Posted by Wrong funding on

    Feds can write a blank check to a hand full of pharmaceuticals but have no money for anything else such as housing, food insecurity, mental health, child abuse and the list goes on and on. People are more concerned with saving their own live than what’s in store in the future for their children and grandchildren.

  18. Posted by Disappointment on

    Social housing should be a stepping stone to home ownership NOT a permanent residence till you die at 80 (PERIOD).
    Families living in social housing with a vehicle, 2 ATVs, 2 snow machines and a 22 foot welded boat with a 200hp outboard in their yard are despicable and should be mocked (PERIOD) even if they are paying the maximum rent (this makes no sense to me whatsoever).
    Stop building social housing and start focusing on helping get people and families into homes they own (PERIOD).
    I can guarantee that 10 yrs from now new social housing won’t be built anymore – it’s just not sustainable, your kids and grandkids are getting screwed because of permanent social housing tenants. Families of 16+ in a home wonder why, it’s because the lack of homeownership incentives and programs, because of the “learned” reliance on this system. Parents that say to their kids “lol don’t get a job and you’ll only pay $60 to live”.

    • Posted by Truth Hurts on

      There is more to it than that, but there can be no real solution that doesn’t address the problem you describe.
      Basically, everyone who has the means to get out of government housing (both public and staff flavours) must get out – both to free up those units for people who actually need them and also to help build something resembling an actual housing market.
      One reason this isn’t more clearly articulated by people who are passionate about housing (e.g. our MP) is that many of these people in their heart-of-hearts secretly believe that EVERYONE should live in government housing.

      • Posted by OrTooMuchInvested on

        Or maybe too many wealthy people are in government subsidized housing and therefore see government housing as the norm and are unable to think there are other ways.

    • Posted by Dial it down on

      We can’t intelligently discuss the reliance on social housing, including staff housing for that matter, without consideration of factors like scarcity of private housing supply and the high costs associated with home ownership in the north.

      Ponder this for a while, it might help dial down your need to deliver moral lectures and perform judgemental displays of sanctimony and righteousness.

  19. Posted by Anomak Niptanatiak on

    Lots of comments and it is as it should be, Nunavut territory is new but the Housing Issue is part of a social program made and enforced by a colonizing government. Nunavutmiut are at the bottom of the Canadian Governments list, after all we were forced to live in one location instead of being nomadic as our ancestors were. We were forced to live in matchbox houses, where once we lived in igloos, sod houses, tents, and rock houses, among a few. Our history is well known among the Inuit, we live and fight for a way of life that the Colonialist do not want us to for if they recognized what they did, they would have to take responsibility and really help us to form out own way of life with the Inuit Elders taught us when we were young. We willingly and with compassion help the visitors to be able to live in this “harsh”, “desolate” and resourceful part of “Canada”. We understand and learnt how to live in the Arctic, and therein lies the problem. Out houses are designed by architects, builders, from the south, who do not know or understand what the elements can do to a wooden house. My husband and I built our own house and we have kiniks that works to exchange the air, take out the excess moisture, and keep he temperature steady. Kiniks were an integral part of Inuit igloos, huts, and tents. Kiniks are air holes, easily made and easily closed. And yes there are addicted people in Nunavut as well as every part of the “Canada”. The way of life enforced on all, does not give way to become a balanced person, the money society values money and worldly goods instead of using it as a tool. Valueing People will enlist change for people to value life…all life. Thanks for listening.

    • Posted by David on

      Out houses are designed by architects, builders, from the south, who do not know or understand what the elements can do to a wooden house.
      You know, I really don’t believe that is the case. Houses are built in the north from Labrador to the Yukon and everywhere in between. This is not because architects or anyone from the south doesn’t understand the north, that’s an easy problem to solve. Lots of architects and builders are from the north.

      These homes are built to a standard building code and that code is the GN’s responsibility to set and enforce. Every province and territory has the authority to alter that code and the GN can make those changes if it’s really the design. The GN’s is also responsible for hiring the inspectors who are approving that these houses are built to the code.

      Honestly, it’s up to the GN to fix this and only the GN has the ability to fix this. The question is, why is it taking them so long to address it?

      • Posted by Anomak Niptanatiak on

        David Cancel, ‘Our houses…” Yes there are codes, yes there are some built by Northerners, yes to many of your points, and there is a very simple solution, Inuit known and used…make kinks in the houses, most electronic air exchanges do not work, create more condensation, hard to change filters, and cost a fortune. Hope this helps

  20. Posted by Naujaat on

    It’s been so many years that I applied for housing in Naujaat, AND only family memebers gets a house first…even when they were so young! they really need to do something about this. Naujaat need new workers at housing

  21. Posted by Wrongfunding on

    Answer to iWonder
    Pretending that you cannot see the racism is racists.

    • Posted by iWonder on

      You are suggesting that to question what is considered the obvious, received wisdom is proof that it is true.

      This is known as a Kafka Trap, a fallacy where if someone denies being x it is taken as evidence that the person is x since someone who is x would deny being x.

      Unfortunately, this is circular and doesn’t say anything useful nor does it answer the question (which I suspect is the real point).

      *Point of interest here, it took multiple attempts to get my original question on this put up. It is taking multiple attempts to get this response put up too. There’s nothing disrespectful in these points or questions. Isn’t it concerning that Nunatsiaq is so averse to allowing this kind of conversation?

      • Posted by Real honest conversation on

        I am not sure why the moderation… We need to have tough conversations

  22. Posted by Favour Favelas on

    Use scrap materials to build shacks similar to the old matchboxes, or similar. Organize to provide basic services (water, etc.). Use civil disobedience to tell government to butt out (or to fish or cut bait) when they try to shut you down. One problem with the status quo is that it’s so easy to ignore because everything looks more or less normal from the street view perspective. Build a shantytown and there’s no ignoring the reality that Nunavut is basically the third world, or at least has comparable conditions in many respects .

  23. Posted by MP – This is Your Story? on

    It is obvious that this MP is not getting advice from the experienced politicians in the party. How could the leader of the NPD approve this report? This explains why the NDP will never lead the country.
    Everyone knows there is a housing crisis in Nunavut as is in the rest of Canada and something needs to be done about it.
    So MP is your solution to give everyone a free home as big as they want and someone else will pay for it and after they destroy it, give them another one?
    As you have shown in your pictures all depict physical abuse. When the vapour barrier is damaged the end result will be mould, its created by warm meeting cold in a damp environment.
    It is incredible that you use this stand, these pictures to present a case that proves not. Again you fail to bring solutions.
    The NDP needs to find a more suitable candidate, one that is capable of finding solutions rather than focusing on the dead issues. If this was enough to traumatize the MP one would wonder what she is capable of accomplishing.
    It is disturbing that this is the way the MP see’s things. Did she ask who punched the holes in the walls and why?

    • Posted by JB on

      I think the leader of the NDP simply assumed that Nunavut’s MP was smart enough to put together the report by herself.

  24. Posted by James on

    Looks to me like that a lot of the things I see are done by dysfunctional tenants, negligence and no respect for public property and they are blaming all levels of government and NGO’s. I think not in lot of the cases.

  25. Posted by Under Siege on

    Miss Qaqqaq needs to get a dose of reality. The problems in Nunavut with respect to housing is much more complex than simply blaming funding and colonialism. And to those going on about vandalism, while you are correct, there are social problems that are at its core. So much substance abuse, poor parenting, poverty; all the ills that create anger and high suicide rates. Imagine growing up in a home where you are abused by the people that are supposed to love you. Imagine going to bed hungry as a child. Hey, I have no idea how to fix this cycle of despair, but I have lived in the North for six years now and I have the utmost respect for Inuit people; they are amazing people in my opinion. To say that they are ungrateful vandals could not be further from the truth. Again, it’s much more complex (in my opinion).

  26. Posted by Truestory on

    People please. The canadian federal government funding is for alloted to the “other” 3rd world countries overseas mostly. Some funding may come someday perhaps. We can hope.

  27. Posted by Qiturngarq on

    This is Poison! • HAZARD •
    How can someone living in this?!
    Save them ~ oh my Gosh! ????

    • Posted by Really on

      The point is no one is given a home with mould

  28. Posted by ActingonComplexProblems on

    I read our MP’s report. It is helpful to see the snapshots from communities but I am sad to see that the only conclusion or strategy is that there needs to be more federal money. I am sure that is right that more money is needed but the strategy to get our of the housing problem in Nunavut has to be a little bit more elaborate than that. How about a range of practical options to address the issue? How do we get a large number of units built? Who can do that fast and urgently? Local communities are full of people with the skills to build cabins on the land; surely they can be part of the solution. There are non profits that rely on volunteers such as habitat for humanity. There are people looking at building non profit rental housing. There have been outcries at high salary government staff living in subsidized housing while lower earning, mostly Inuit, staff do not get subsidized housing. I have been wondering whether the military couldn’t be tasked with building houses in Nunavut; usually people like the military in Nunavut; I am not fond of the concept of the military generally but they have skills and they are very skilled at logistics and deploying resources. I remember a colleague suggesting that high earning staff should show leadership by getting out of subsidized housing and buying a house and that others would follow; positive leadership can do a lot. Can’t the GN train and hire more contractors or staff to fix houses? None of this is simple, all of it takes energy and commitment, all of it requires hard work, but there are so many options, and all should be considered and many put in place; there will not be one single solution; there needs to be a strategy with several prongs to it. I am sure many people who advocate for housing know that. All options need money, obviously, but they need creativity and different parties taking responsibility. I understand the need to blame and I understand that our MP is in a federal arena and that pushing for funding for Nunavut from the federal government is something obvious she can do in her role,but I also think that building partnership, showing positive leadership, building bridges is likely to get us further than simply pointing fingers.

    • Posted by When does it stop? on

      How do we solve this criss and get out of this. Family planning has to be part of the solution. If you have no way to support or house a kid maybe starting at 15 and having kid after kid is not a good idea. People will say this is colonialism but really it’s math.

      At some point we have to build houses and turn them over. $60 a month in rent is not coming the cost of the utilities. Give people houses and walk away. Maybe you won’t have the heat cranked to 30 with the window open while sitting in your boxers creating condensation which creates mould. Maybe you will develop pride in home ownership and houses will be cared for or not but aleast there will be no blame on the gov for not fixing them

  29. Posted by Kenn Harper on

    The Standing Senate Committee on Aboriginal Affairs issued a comprehensive report, “We Can Do Better: Housing in Inuit Nunangat” in March 2017. It addresses all Inuit regions of Canada, and contains actionable recommendations. I recommend that people read it, and compare it with the recent report of Nunavut’s MP. If the link doesn’t work, you can Google it.

    • Posted by Paul Murphy on

      Thanks fore the link Kenn. More informative than anything else out there even at four years old. Wonder if our MP even considered referencing it before she went on her holiday trip?

      Th big question tho is, what has CMHC done with it. Have they put in place any of the committee recommendations.?

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