MMIW Inquiry: Nunavut Premier appoints two ministers to file
Minister Responsible for the Status of Women and Minister of Justice to take leading roles
Nunavut Premier Peter Taptuna has appointed two ministers to support a national inquiry into missing and murdered indigenous women in an effort to show his government's commitment to the issue.
Minister Responsible for the Status of Women Monica Ell-Kanayuk and Justice Minister Paul Okalik will take charge of the file, Taptuna said.
He made the announcement Wednesday in his first statement of the Nunavut Legislative Assembly's winter sitting.
"As premier, I believe this delicate, complex issue needs a concentrated commitment from multiple levels of government," he said.
Taptuna says Minister Ell-Kanayuk is attending the second national roundtable on missing and murdered indigenous women Friday. It is taking place this week in Winnipeg.
"I'm profoundly grateful to the families that have come forward to share their difficult experiences during Canada's pre-inquiry consultations on missing and murdered women hosted by federal indigenous affairs minister, Minister Carolyn Bennett," said Taptuna.
Bennett met with family members of missing and murdered indigenous women in Iqaluit last month.
Although Taptuna supports a national inquiry, he said the territory needs to take a closer look at why domestic violence happens.
"Mr. Speaker, no woman or person should suffer from violence. An inquiry needs to take into account Nunavut's circumstances which differs from other jurisdictions. We need to look at the root causes at our own systematic domestic violence against women in Nunavut. And include those who may go missing," he said.
Taptuna did not take a position on an inquiry until June 2015.
Former Status of Women Minister Jeannie Ugyuk had said an inquiry is an expensive process and there are better ways to use government money to provide programs for women.