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June 16th, 2022

NDP: People in Nunavut should have the health care services they need

OTTAWA – Inuit and Nunavummiut are struggling to access the health care services they need in the territory, forcing them to travel hundreds of miles south to Ottawa to get the care they need. Besides the high financial costs, elders and their families are often separated as there aren’t enough long-term care beds in their communities in Nunavut. Today, NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh and NDP MP Lori Idlout (Nunavut) called on the government to fund basic health care services, like long-term care, in Nunavut so elders don’t have to leave their families and communities when they need care.

“Inuit and Nunavummiut are desperately calling for help to make sure their loved ones can access the care they need,” said Singh “The lack of action by the federal government to address these needs is making things very difficult for those who just want the best for their families. It’s unacceptable that basic health care services continue to go under-funded by the Liberal government. When I travelled to Nunavut, people shared their stories with me of wanting to get the care they need close to home. They have been waiting years for these essential services. New Democrats will keep fighting for people and the treatment they need in their communities.”

Communities in Nunavut have been asking the government to address the urgent need for long-term care infrastructure for years. Long-term care homes in the territory have been at full capacity since 2017, forcing elders to be leave their families and communities to access care outside Nunavut. The NDP has been urging the government to invest in Indigenous health care infrastructure, medical supplies, diagnostic equipment and in hiring more staff so that Inuit and Nunavummiut can get the care they need in their communities.

“Elders and their families in Nunavut need more than nice words from this government,” said Idlout. “Their calls to have the basic care they need in their communities can no longer be ignored. We will keep fighting to make sure more investments are made in health care infrastructure in Nunavut. We cannot allow Inuit and Nunavummiut elders to be torn from their families just to access care that this government should be making available to them. Our people deserve better.”