Understanding Nunavut is the ‘only way’ to understand Canada, Trudeau says

Liberal Leader made a quick campaign stop in Iqaluit Monday

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Nunavut Liberal candidate Pat Angnakak met with residents during a campaign event at Iqaluit Square Monday evening. (Photo by David Venn)

By David Venn
Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau told a crowd of around 100 people in Iqaluit on Monday that understanding the North is the key to understanding the rest of the country.

“Understanding Nunavut, understanding the North is the only way to properly understand Canada and all Canadians,” he said during a rally in Iqaluit Square. The way people across Inuit Nunangat are there for each other is an example for all Canadians and the world to follow, he said.

The prime minister made a quick visit Nunavut’s capital to show his support for local Liberal candidate Pat Angnakak in her bid to win the territory’s seat in Parliament in the Sept. 20 federal election.

The event was scheduled for 4:45 p.m. at Iqaluit Square, but Trudeau, Angnakak and Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller arrived more than an hour late after stopping in Apex. Much of the crowd stayed until Trudeau came.

The trio of Liberals took turns speaking, mainly about their party’s campaign promises involving mental health and housing.

Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau, left, listens as Pat Angnakak, the Liberal candidate in Nunavut, speaks during an Iqaluit rally on Monday. (Photo by David Venn)

Trudeau said a Liberal government would invest “hundreds of millions of dollars more” in both mental health and housing, with Angnakak, a former MLA, saying that she ran for the Liberals because she feels the party is Nunavut’s best shot at addressing those needs.

“I need Pat by my side,” Trudeau said. “I need a strong voice for Nunavut, I need a strong voice for all of you to make sure that your concerns are heard.”

Trudeau has received criticism for calling the election during the COVID-19 pandemic, with some seeing it as an attempt to win a majority government. The Liberals have led a minority government since the 2019 election.

During his speech, Trudeau said the election had to be called because decisions on the pandemic, climate change and inequality will be made within the “coming months, not years from now.”

“That’s why this election has to be right now,” Trudeau said. “Because we can’t wait a year or two years to decide as a country how we move forward beyond COVID.”

NDP candidate Lori Idlout issued a statement while Trudeau was speaking to the crowd, saying that he has no “real intention of delivering on his commitments.”

“He’s had six years to fix the housing crisis and address affordability in the territory — yet we are still living in mold-infested, overcrowded homes,” she said.

Trudeau’s plane — identifiable on the runway by its red and white markings and the Trudeau 2021 logo emblazoned on it — touched down at the Iqaluit airport around 3:30 p.m. It left to return to Ottawa four hours later, at about 7:30 p.m.

His stop in Iqaluit was in stark contrast from his visits in southern constituencies last week, where protesters disrupted a rally in Nobleton, Ont., causing him to cancel a campaign event later that evening in Bolton, Ont., citing safety concerns.

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(3) Comments:

  1. Posted by M Center on

    He’s only had two terms to understand the only way Inuit live what the Inuit needs are. If there was only a way he’d keep promises. Hope it isn’t photo ops and selfie’s that just make people vote a certain way as a result of rubbing elbows is given that much weight of someone ill informed of politics and just happy to get a picture sways their vote. What campaigns are meant to do. But look at the recent history of Government past two terms and the handlings or mishandling of certain things aren’t over looked. Vote for what you feel is best for Nunavut.

    The other Party in Orange had previously addressed need for housing as well, but, all politicians know as do the public that in Nunavut the Housing Crises is core issue and root cause to well-being of families and individuals. After two failed promises in Office with this guy as Top of Government Head it may be time for a change in direction for the Country. Good luck Nunavut.

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  2. Posted by Justin never said anything Trudeau on

    The guy is looking for sympathy votes. He says a lot of stuff to get them. Does he ever act in the proper manner to get the job done? No.

  3. Posted by boris pasternak on

    mental health is a big issue up here, treatments centers are needed at the three regions or even a super center at Iqaluit. You need this when you start seeing lines for booze as far as sewage lagoon, goodness ppl are the withdrawal that huge? mental treatment centers and safe houses for battered women and children needs to be in place, it’s going to be horrible for Rankin for about a year when a beer and wine store opens. Get the facilities in place GN before you starting wrecking lives at fast pace. If Trudeau does not see a need for mental health’s services; he’s a wacko himself. Takes one to know one as the saying goes.

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