Speaker welcomes Premier to Gjoa Haven

Mr. Speaker,

I continue to be awed by the beauty of our territory’s western region. My recent visit to the Kitikmeot community of Gjoa Haven was no exception.

On your invitation Mr. Speaker, I visited Gjoa Haven on August 1st and 2nd. I wish to thank you and your wife Annie for your hospitality.

In Gjoa Haven we were greeted at once by Mayor Megan Porter. It was hot and sunny, and I was honoured to be able to serve burgers and hotdogs to residents who came out for a feast.

Mr. Speaker, through your coordination I appeared before the hamlet council to listen and answer question. I sat down with the Kikitak Housing Association and stood on the lots where Nunavut 3000 builds began this summer. I visited your vibrant health centre run by dedicated staff. At the Continuing Care Centre, I spoke with Elders from the region and learned that the 10-bed center is a key community employer.

On a more serious note, I visited the community morgue, an older building with no temperature control. This is one example of how far reaching the territory’s infrastructure deficit can be, even having an impact on the care of the deceased.

I will acknowledge Mr. Speaker, my visit came at a time when residents were recovering from the tragic loss of community members. Despite this sadness, I experienced Gjoa Haven’s welcoming spirit and resilience. Inuit culture is alive and well in this community. Thank you to the Tainiit drum dance singers and all the dancers, from youth to Elders, who shared this traditional practice with me.  

We always end our statements this way, but after experiencing the kindness and beauty of Gjoa Haven, I mean it especially when I say:

Thank you, Mr. Speaker.