Nunavut cabinet shuffle makes George Hickes new health minister

Premier Peter Taptuna has shuffled his cabinet and made George Hickes the new health minister.

George Hickes also becomes new minister responsible for suicide prevention

Peter Taptuna names George Hickes as Minister of Health. (Jane Sponagle/CBC)

Nunavut Premier Peter Taptuna has shuffled his cabinet and made Iqaluit-Tasiluk MLA George Hickes the new health minister.

"After working with new ministers and observing the distinct strengths of each member of cabinet, I have reassigned portfolios to renew energy and reinvigorate collaboration," said Taptuna in a news release.

​Hickes is now also the minister responsible for suicide prevention.​

Hickes takes over the portfolio from Monica Ell-Kanayuk. She had been in the role since March after Paul Okalik resigned from his post, citing cabinet's decision to move forward with opening a beer and wine store in Iqaluit while the territory still has no alcohol treatment centre.

Another rookie Minister, Joe Savikataaq, has been given the additional jobs of environment and energy, on top of community and government services.

Savikataaq takes over the environment portfolio from Johnny Mike, who's facing one of the biggest shifts in this cabinet shuffle.

Mike has been the environment minister since the beginning of this assembly in 2013. Now he is overseeing more social portfolios as the minister for Family Services as well as the minister responsible for poverty reduction, homelessness and the Qulliq Energy Corporation. 

George Kuksuk is once again the minister responsible for the Nunavut Housing Corporation. He'll keep his portfolios as minister of Culture and Heritage and Languages. 

Keith Peterson and Paul Quassa keep all their portfolios. 

The changes come into effect next Friday.

The full list of cabinet ministers and portfolios

Peter Taptuna

  • Premier
  • Minister of Executive and Intergovernmental Affairs
  • Minister responsible for Aboriginal Affairs
  • Minister responsible for Seniors' Advocate
  • Minister responsible for Immigration

Monica Ell-Kanayuk

  • ​Deputy Premier
  • Minister of Economic Development and Transportation
  • Minister responsible for Mines
  • Minister responsible for the Nunavut Business Credit Corporation
  • Minister responsible for the Nunavut Development Corporation
  • Minister responsible for the Status of Women
  • Minister responsible for the Utility Rates Review Council

George Kuksuk

  • ​Minister of Culture and Heritage
  • Minister of Languages
  • Minister responsible for Nunavut Housing Corporation

Johnny Mike

  • Minister of Family Services
  • Minister responsible for Poverty Reduction
  • Minister responsible for Homelessness
  • Minister responsible for Qulliq Energy Corporation

Keith Peterson

  • Minister of Finance
  • Chairman of the Financial Management Board
  • Minister of Justice
  • Minister responsible for the Nunavut Liquor Commission
  • Minister responsible for the Liquor Licensing Board
  • Minister responsible for the Human Rights Tribunal
  • Minister responsible for the Labour Standards Board
  • Minister responsible for Workers' Safety and Compensation Commission

Paul Quassa

  • ​Minister of Education
  • Minister responsible for Nunavut Arctic College
  • Government House Leader

George Hickes

  • ​Minister of Health
  • Minister responsible for suicide prevention

Joe Savikataaq

  • ​Minister of Community and Government Services
  • Minister of Environment
  • Minister of Energy
  • Nunavut Chair, Hudson Bay Roundtable