Ministerial Statement – Inuit Women’s Conference Empowers Participants
March 27, 2013
The following statement was given today in the House of Assembly by the Honourable Joan Shea, Acting Minister Responsible for the Status of Women:
Inuit Women’s Conference Empowers Participants
Mr. Speaker I rise in this Honourable House today to acknowledge the Inuit Women’s Gathering, a successful event made possible by the inspiring efforts of Inuit women working to support their advancement. From February 24 to 27, approximately 35 Inuit women attended the Inuit Women’s Gathering held in Nain, which included women from five Inuit communities within Nunatsiavut, as well as Upper Lake Melville and other parts of the province.
The meeting provided an opportunity for Inuit women to discuss and learn about the importance of healthy relationships, physical and mental wellness, how to run for elected office and how to access victim services. Attendees also identified priority areas important to advancing the status of Inuit women.
During the gathering, attendees heard from extraordinary Inuit women including: Francis Williams, the first female Inuit President of the Labrador Inuit Association; Patricia Kemuksigak, the current Minister of Health and Social Development and Minister Responsible for the Status of Women with Nunatsiavut Government; Charlotte Wolfrey, the AngajukKâk (Mayor) for Rigolet; and Aaju Peter, a lawyer and sealskin clothing designer. These female Inuit leaders shared personal experiences with the group, as well as their expertise on balancing work and family responsibilities.
I would like to congratulate Inuit elder Andrea Flowers on winning the first Inuit Woman of the Year Award, which was presented at the meeting by the Nunatsiavut Government’s Status of Women Office. Mrs. Flowers, also known as Aunt Joy, is a well-respected elder of Hopedale and has played a key role in the preservation of Inuit culture and tradition.
Through Budget 2013, our government will continue to support Inuit women through our Inuit Women’s Capacity Building Project, which will allow additional workshops for Inuit women to be developed and held in Nunasiavut. In addition to this, a Facebook page called Knowledge is Empowerment provides information on programs and services, as well as tips on personal development skills and has proven to be an effective tool.
Once again Mr. Speaker, I congratulate the Inuit women of Nunatsiavut and the Nunatsiavut Government on a successful conference.
2013 03 27