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All Inuit women and girls have the right to feel and be safe

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

June 3, 2019

OTTAWA – Working towards ending violence towards Inuit women and girls has been at the heart of Pauktuutit’s work since its inception 35 years ago. We have been anxiously awaiting the release of the final report by the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls.

Pauktuutit acknowledges that it was extremely difficult for Inuit, most of whom had to travel significant distances to participate. It took great courage, and because there are few or no mental health and healing services in their communities, they face additional hardships after sharing their deeply personal stories. We also express thanks to the advocates and other experts who gave statements and the individuals who worked for the Inquiry. We know that it was immensely difficult, and we are grateful to every person who spoke, listened, and shared.

Pauktuutit is a member of an official Party with Standing with our partners – Saturviit Inuit Women’s Association, Ottawa Inuit Children’s Centre (now called Inuuqatigiit Centre for Inuit Children, Youth and Families), AnânauKatiget Tumingit Regional Inuit Women’s Association, and the Manitoba Inuit Association. “Though we will be taking time to fully review the report and consult with the other members of our Party before commenting on its contents, it is encouraging to see that Inuit-specific recommendations are included,” said President Rebecca Kudloo. “But with a fast-growing number of Inuit moving south, many because they can’t get essential services in their communities, I’m disappointed that urban Inuit are not specifically included in the Calls to Justice. Other areas that we’ll be looking at closely include Inuit-designed healing programs, culturally-relevant child safety, and engaging men and boys in ending violence. And of course, we know that action on housing and shelters is a longstanding and urgent issue across Inuit Nunangat.”

Further calls to address the critical need for safe places for Inuit women and their children are included in Pauktuutit’s Study of Gender-based Violence and Shelter Service Needs across Inuit Nunangat being published today. The Study, with its 14 recommendations, can be downloaded from www.pauktuutit.ca.

“Safety for Inuit women is complex. If we are to deal with the root causes of violence, we must stop the cycle of discrimination and the cycles of physical and sexual abuse. To do that, we need the full commitment of governments and communities. If we don’t work together to implement Inuit-led solutions, Inuit women and their children will continue to be in danger,” said President Kudloo.

Media Requests

Tania Budgell, Director of Communications

communications@pauktuutit.ca

C: 613-316-8943 or T: 613-238-3977 ext. 239

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