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Resolutions from the 2021 Annual General Meeting

Every year, ongoing and emerging issues that impact Inuit women and their families are identified and prioritized by directors, community representatives, and Pauktuutit staff.

Comprised of board members, the Resolution Committee reviews these issues and determines which are the most significant for Inuit women and their families.

The issues that are deemed most important to Pauktuutit are prioritized and drafted into resolutions. Resolutions help to guide the work of the organization.

In January, the Resolutions Committee presented nine resolutions to the Board of Directors at the 2021 Annual General Meeting. All were reviewed, voted on and approved. 

Summaries of the 2021 Resolutions are listed below.

2021-1 Inuit Women and their Basic Human Rights

In Canada, human rights are protected by federal, provincial and territorial laws. Canada’s human rights laws stem from the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. 

The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms of 1982 is part of Canada’s Constitution. 

The Charter protects every Canadian’s right to be treated equally under the law. Provincial and territorial human rights laws are very similar to the Canadian Human Rights Act and apply many of the same principles and protect people from discrimination in areas of provincial and territorial jurisdiction, such as restaurants, stores, schools, housing and most workplaces. 

There is a human rights commissions in each province and territory with the exception of Nunavut and British Columbia, who have tribunals. There is no indigenous body for human rights.

2021-2 GBA+ and the Inuit Crown Partnership Committee

The Government of Canada has established permanent bilateral mechanisms with Inuit to identify joint priorities, co-develop policy and monitor progress. The Inuit-Crown Partnership Committee is held with ITK, with Pauktuutit as an observer.

The Government of Canada is committed to supporting the full implementation of Gender- Based Analysis (GBA) across federal departments and agencies.

GBA helps to ensure that the development of policies, programs and legislation includes the consideration of differential impacts on diverse groups of women and men.

As an overarching goal, ensure government policy, legislation, and regulations are sensitive to the different impacts that decisions can have on men and women.

The federal government is responsible and accountable for the implementation of GBA+ and all ICPC work must be developed accordingly. GBA+ should be considered foundational and underpin all policy work to ensure inclusion of the voice of Inuit women. Inuit women have a stake in accountability, decision making and the allocation of regional and national funding.

There is a need to complete a GBA+ submission evaluation and analysis to ensure the equitability of resources respecting GBA+ and Pauktuutit’s voice as the voice of Inuit women in Canada.

2021-3 United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People C-15 Legislation Introduced December 3, 2020

First reading in the House of Commons)

The proclamation of the C-15 legislation is urgently needed to end the gross inequities Inuit women and their children face.

In order to fulfill obligations to Inuit women and their children under s. 35 of the Constitution Act, 1982, s. 15 of the Charter, and the proposed UNDRIP Act, Canada will have a duty to consult with Inuit women.

Indigenous peoples are unique in their cultures, traditions and historic timelines. The challenges Inuit face are different than the challenges for First Nations and Métis peoples and the actions needed to redress the inequalities Inuit face are also different.

The obligations in the draft UNDRIP Act cannot be fulfilled without the consultation and cooperation of Inuit. These obligations cannot be fulfilled by consulting only Inuit men nor through a non- gendered lens.

Canada can fulfill this obligation by the consultation and cooperation of Inuit women, through our voice as the national representative body for Inuit women.

It is only through consulting and achieving the cooperation of Inuit women can the government’s mandate that its laws, regulations, policies and programs be viewed through a gender-based analysis plus (GBA+) be achieved.

When Indigenous peoples have the rights to be consulted and their cooperation sought by Canada, then Inuit women, who are ‘Aboriginal Peoples’, will have the same right to be consulted and their cooperation sought as do Inuit men.

 

2021-4 Broaden Policies/Programs for Urban Inuit Women and Girls across Canada

Deferred resolution 2020-AGM-06

Inuit are a diverse community with various socio-economic conditions, which includes those living in both rural and urban settings outside of Inuit Nunangat.

There are many reasons Inuit move outside of Inuit Nunangat, including to seek better support and services for trauma, healing, to escape violence, due to incarceration, for better access to housing and employment, for lower cost of living, for medical reasons, or to take on educational opportunities; there are many Inuit who are not beneficiaries of the land claim regional organizations.

Beneficiary status is not a birth right, but has criteria tied to residency and land.

In 2016 Statistics Canada recorded over 30,000 individuals who identified as Inuk ancestry (40%) living out of Inuit Nunangat. This included over two-thirds being Inuit women and children under the age of 15 (over 21,000).

In alignment with Pauktuutit’s mandate to foster a greater awareness of the needs of Inuit women, this is inclusive of Inuit women living out of Inuit Nunangat where there is a need for increased advocacy for Inuit women to ensure the long-term, sustainable, and equitable funding to meet the capacity needs and respect Inuit self-determination

2021-5 Anti-Racism in the Canadian Health Care System
The racism Inuit women and children experience in Canada’s healthcare system is well documented. Recommendations to address systemic racism are well known.

Despite this, systemic racism plays a large role in the health outcomes gap for Inuit women and girls, starting long before an Inuk woman seeks pre-natal care, help for her sick child, or goes to an emergency room after suffering a brain trauma from gendered violence.

For Inuit women, healthcare services do not meet the five basic principles of the Canada Health Act — accessibility, comprehensiveness, universality, portability, and public administration.

We believe this issue is compounded for Inuit women and their children when considering Pre-mature babies/medically fragile children/children with disabilities. The ability to make informed and resourced choices are not options due to community capacity, infrastructure, and racism.

There is a need to ensure the challenges and complications that exist for Inuit women and their children — especially those who are premature or pre-term babies/medically fragile children/children with disabilities — are represented and form the basis of evidenced- based, sustainable, and equitable funding and policy support for Inuit women and children facing extraordinary situations, compounded by the lack of services and supports in communities.

2021-6 COVID-19/ Pandemic Harm Reduction

COVID-19 spreads from an infected person to others through respiratory droplets and aerosols created when an infected person coughs, sneezes, sings, shouts, or talks.

The droplets vary in size from large droplets that fall to the ground rapidly (within seconds or minutes) near the infected person, to smaller droplets, sometimes called aerosols, which linger in the air under some circumstances.

The relative infectiousness of different droplet sizes is not clear. Infectious droplets or aerosols may come into direct contact with the mucous membranes of another person’s nose, mouth or eyes, or they may be inhaled into their nose, mouth, airways and lungs. The virus may also spread when a person touches another person (i.e., a handshake) or a surface or an object (also referred to as a fomite) that has the virus on it, and then touches their mouth, nose or eyes with unwashed hands.

Inuit women should continue to think ahead about the actions they can take to stay healthy and prevent the spread of COVID-19 in Canada. Consistent with Health Canada and the Public Health Agency of Canada, Pauktuutit will communicate accurate and reliable health and safety information to Inuit families and communities to supportinformed decision-making in following vaccination and prevention measures to reduce COVID-19.

 

2021-7 Increase the Economic Independence of Inuit Women

To thrive in the harshest climates and conditions of Canada’s North, Inuit women have been innovative and resourceful in celebrating Inuit culture, traditions, and heritage through rich heritage of craftsmanship.

The incredible art and technique of Inuit clothing, art and jewelry has the potential to create social entrepreneurship opportunities for Inuit women by promoting and leveraging global platform(s) to showcase their extraordinary craftsmanship and unique designs.

Pauktuutit’s Social and Economic department has a mandate to cover a broad range of social and economic issues, including economic development, political empowerment and promotion of traditional knowledge.

2021-8 Individuals with Disabilities – Data and Research to Inform Policy

In Canada, disability is defined using the social model of disability, which considers not just a person’s impairments or task difficulties, but also the added impact of environmental barriers to create disability.

Although disability has been studied widely for the Canadian population in general, far less research exists with a focus on disability among First Nations people, Métis and Inuit.

Inuit are often underrepresented in studies or treated as a homogenous group with First Nations people and Métis, neglecting the cultural, historical, and geographic diversity of these populations.

Research on disability among Inuit is especially relevant in light of experienced discrimination, historic oppression and trauma that are tied to various social and health inequalities.

Pauktuutit’s mandate includes the need to foster a greater awareness of the needs of Inuit women and their children.

There is a need to ensure the accurate and comparable data for Inuit women and their children with disabilities to form the basis of evidenced based, sustainable, and equitable funding of Inuit women and children facing disabilities.

2021-9 The Inclusion of Gender Diversity (2SLGBTQQIA Discussion)

There is a lack of language, information, and conversations around the inclusion of gender identity, gender expression, and gender diversity (the 2SLGBTQQIA) community within Inuit communities and the work of Pauktuutit.

There are increasing calls for input and recommendations to advocate for and address the inclusion of gender diversity and the 2SLGBTQQIA community within projects and policy.

There is a lack of support for gender diverse and 2SLGBTQQIA youth transitioning from Inuit Nunangat to an urban centre.

There are no Inuit-specific educational tools and resources on gender identity, gender expression, and the 2SLGBTQQIA community, in response to the emerging theme and trend of gender and the 2SLGBTQQIA community within Pauktuutit’s work.

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