OTTAWA. November 2, 2022 — Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland will present the government’s fall economic statement on November 3. Pauktuutit Inuit Women of Canada looks forward to confirming that the federal government remains committed to improving the safety and well-being of Inuit women, girls, gender-diverse individuals and their families.
“This Fall Economic statement must reinforce the funding commitments made by the government to Inuit women,” says Gerri Sharpe, President of Pauktuutit Inuit Women of Canada.
“This critical support for Inuit women takes many forms, including the creation of more safe spaces and second-stage housing for women fleeing violence, improved access to health services and healing programs, the empowerment of Inuit women’s voices and leadership, as well as implementation of police practice reforms,” President Sharpe explains.
Inuit-Specific Shelters & Transition Housing
Through dedication and hard work, Pauktuutit is seeing progress on five new Inuit-specific shelters and transition housing. Pauktuutit continues to call on the federal government to strengthen its commitment by funding additional shelters, safe houses, transition houses and second-stage housing for Inuit women, children, and gender-diverse people fleeing violence. Even with the planned addition of five new shelters (one in each region of Inuit Nunangat and one in Ottawa), there will only be 20 shelters to serve 51 communities in the North.
Investments in new shelters and transition housing represent a wise use of federal infrastructure dollars, playing a significant role in improving — and even saving — the lives of many women and children, as well as providing meaningful local employment and skills development opportunities.
To address the urgent need for pre-natal, birth and post-partum care for expectant mothers across Inuit Nunangat, Pauktuutit requests multi-year funding for the training of Inuit midwives and to support the respectful integration of their role in community clinics and hospitals.
Investing in Inuit midwifery will help ensure Inuit women have access to safe and compassionate pregnancy, birth and postpartum care. This investment also means these women won’t have to leave their homes, their young children and their circle of support to receive this care.
Empowering Inuit Women’s Leadership
To end gender-based violence and close the gender equality gap for Inuit women and gender-diverse Inuit, Pauktuutit requires federal funding to ensure an Inuit-specific Gender-based Analysis Plus (GBA+) Framework is applied to all legislative, policy and program decisions that impact the lives of Inuit women and gender-diverse Inuit.
Pauktuutit’s Empowering Inuit Women in Leadership initiative will advance gender equality to end gender-based violence and create systemic change by ensuring Inuit women’s voices are heard on both the range of policy issues that get considered and the types of solutions that are proposed.
Recommendations to Improve the Safety and Security of Inuit Women
To improve the safety and security of Inuit women, girls, and gender-diverse Inuit, Pauktuutit continues to work collaboratively with the RCMP.
Pauktuutit’s detailed report: Addressing Gendered Violence Against Inuit Women: A review of police policies and practices in Inuit Nunangat lays out 15 recommendations to address serious policing challenges in remote communities and improve safety and security for Inuit. This landmark report called for a fundamental shift in how northern policing is carried out, to address the pervasiveness and severity of the violence experienced by Inuit women.
We continue to call on all levels of government and law enforcement to support the implementation of these crucial recommendations.
Please visit https://bit.ly/3UiXog5 to read Pauktuutit’s 2022-2023 Pre-Budget submission.
Pauktuutit Inuit Women of Canada is the national non-profit organization representing all Inuit women in Canada. Its mandate is to foster a greater awareness of the needs of Inuit women, and to encourage their participation in community, regional and national concerns in relation to social, cultural, and economic development.
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