‘Human Flagpoles’ mark Arctic Sovereignty

There is a lot to learn about the context of Nunavut, the way Inuit people have lived for generations, and the way that has changed in the past decades – described by Dr. Isaac Sobol, the Chief Medical Officer of Health for the territory as a ‘cultural earthquake’.

One thing to understand is that in the 1950s, some Inuit were settled into communities (now Resolute and Grise Fiord – the two of the furthest north communities, with the exception of Alert) by government, for government purposes, such as Arctic sovereignty…not necessarily the goodness of the government’s heart (even if that had been the motive, it would have been only slightly paternalistic…).  This disrupted everything that these people had known for generations and generations…

Today’s story in my morning news monitor did a good job of recapping this situation…and also pointed out that compensation to these families and their children began in 1996…but that compensation today is not what was promised in the past…

This legacy and the story about diminishing compensation, are just two of the reasons we have a responsibility to continue to work with Inuit people and others living in Nunavut to meet needs, improve services and increase quality of life.

No one should be a human flagpole…

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