As we adjust to new realities brought by the COVID-19 pandemic, longstanding social and economic challenges in our society threaten to magnify its potential impacts on our people. Forexample, challenges that put Inuit at a higher risk for contracting tuberculosis, such as household crowding, food insecurity and access to health-care services, may also put our people at a greater risk for contracting COVID-19 and experiencing more severe symptoms from the dis- ease than most other Canadians.
ITK’s 2020-2023 Strategy and Action Plan, released in May 2020, aims to address these challenges. It forms our organization’s core mandate and guides ITK’s day-to-day work. It also serves as an accountability mechanism for Inuit and the ITK Board of Directors to monitor and evaluate ITK’s progress. The Strategy and Action Plan creates transparency as we work to implement the document’s objectives, actions, and deliverables.
The Strategy builds on our 2016-2019 Strategy and Action Plan, which included key deliverables such as the National Inuit Suicide PreventionStrategy, National Inuit Strategy on Research, and the adoption of a national Inuktut writing system, Inuktut Qaliujaaqpait. Inuit have leveraged somedeliverables to secure multi-year federal funding that is positively impacting many of our communities.
The seven new objectives identiﬁed in the 2020-2023 Strategy and Action Plan are as follows:
- Take action to reduce poverty among Inuit;
- Work to close the Inuit Nunangat infrastructure gap;
- Advance Inuit-speciﬁc health and social development policies, programs, and initiatives;
- Support Inuktut protection, revitalization, maintenance, and promotion;
- Facilitate climate change response and adaption measures;
- Empower Inuit through education, research and data and information access ownership and dissemination;
- and Support Inuit Nunangat coastal and marine management and marine infrastructure development.
These objectives are tied to key deliverables that include the development of a National Inuit Poverty Reduction Strategy; an Inuit-speciﬁc equivalent to Jordan’s Principle; a National Inuit Infrastructure Investment Strategy; and con- ducting the Qanuippitaa? National Inuit Health Survey.
We also continue to work closely with federal partners through the Inuit-Crown Partnership Committee to advance these and other priorities by engaging directly with federal ministers to advance Inuit-Crown workplans.
ITK has taken signiﬁcant and at times historic steps to advance national Inuit priorities in the last three years, and with this 2020-2023 Strategy and Action Plan I look forward to continuing this work on behalf of all Inuit.
President, Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami