Iqaluit woman recognized by Facebook for activist work

An Iqaluit woman is being recognized by Facebook for her use of the site, which led to protests and more awareness of high food prices in the territory.

Leesee Papatsie used social media site to organize protests and raise awareness about food prices

This past spring, protesters took to the streets of Iqaluit and other communities in Nunavut to protest the high cost of food in the territory. (CBC)

An Iqaluit woman is being recognized by Facebook for her effective use of the site.

A Facebook team was in Iqaluit this past weekend to interview Leesee Papatsie, who created the group ‘Feeding My Family’.

Papatsie used the group to organize protests against the high cost of food in Nunavut. One protest took place as recently as last week in Pond Inlet. The group also garnered more than 21,000 members in its short life span.

Facebook headquarters took notice and will feature a story about Papatsie and the group. It’s part of the company’s new initiative called Facebook Stories which was launched this month.

The initiative is an editorial site which features people who use the site in extraordinary ways.

Allie Townsend, an editor at Facebook Stories, travelled to Iqaluit from San Francisco to interview Papatsie and learn more about high food prices in this month’s edition. The theme this month is ‘Degrees of Separation’.

"One of the reasons why there are high food prices is because of the distance from communities up here in Nunavut and the rest of Canada," said Townsend.

Papatsie said she is happy her group is getting more recognition.

"I think it's really great. It is more for Nunavummiut to bring that awareness."

Townsend was only in town for a few days, but she experienced Nunavut's hospitality — Papatsie invited her to dinner to try some county food.