Wanted: Freezers for dead people


Delegates at the recent annual general meeting of Makivik Corp. in Kangirsuk brought up the need for freezers to store corpses in communities.

In the past, bodies were often stored in sheds or other buildings, but rising temperatures and new sensitivities are making this former method unpopular.

Bodies sent south for autopsies, which are shipped back to communities in Nunavik, present storage challenges in the region.

One delegate suggested the creation of a new subsidiary within Makivik that would buy mortuary freezers for the communities.

Makivik president Pita Aatami said this would be hard to justify within the corporation’s spending guidelines.

“It would seem like we have a lot of money but we don’t. Our operations are only based on the interests. We try to follow our rules and procedures,” he said.

Aatami suggested trying to find some funding with the health board, but the chair of the health board said the health board felt it was a municipal responsibility.

“Work with your municipality and make a proposal,” suggested health board chair Alacie Arngak to the delegates. “It’s not part of our responsibility.”

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