Chapter 3: Inuit Priorities

Inuit priorities

Self-determination, self-government, and treaty implementation

The Government of Canada will take the following actions in consultation and cooperation with Inuit:

  1. The Crown will respect and support the right of Inuit to exercise their right to self-determination, including co-developing Inuit-specific approaches for implementation of the right to self-determination, including through negotiated agreements, new policies and legislative mechanisms. (Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada)
  2. The Crown will implement its modern treaty obligations and work in partnership with Inuit Treaty Organizations to apply an Inuit Nunangat approach – as outlined in Section 5 of the Inuit Nunangat Policy – to implementing, monitoring, and assessing the Modern Treaty Implementation Policy. (Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada)
  3. Recognizing that Inuit modern treaties are living documents capable of evolving over time, the Crown will actively engage in good-faith negotiations with Inuit Treaty Organizations to pursue amendments to the terms of a modern treaty and will actively seek to involve all necessary partners. (Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada)

Advancing Inuit-Crown partnership

The Government of Canada will take the following actions in consultation and cooperation with Inuit:

  1. The Crown will continue to actively engage in and support the Inuit-Crown Partnership Committee (ICPC), and utilize it as a primary mechanism for facilitating work on Inuit-specific Actions for implementing the UN Declaration, as well as for advancing shared Inuit-Crown priorities that will evolve on an ongoing basis subject to decision by Inuit Treaty Organizations and the Crown. Current shared Inuit-Crown priorities are:
    1. Inuit land claims implementation
    2. Inuktut revitalization, maintenance, protection, and promotion
    3. Inuit Nunangat Policy Space
    4. Reconciliation measures and efforts to end the issue of missing and murdered Indigenous women, girls, and 2SLGBTQI+ people
    5. Education, early learning, and skills development
    6. Health and wellness
    7. Environment and climate change
    8. Housing
    9. Homelessness
    10. Infrastructure
    11. Economic development and procurement
    12. Legislative priorities
    13. International Inuit priorities
    14. Monitoring, evaluation, and learning
    15. Sovereignty, defence, and security (Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada)
  2. The Crown will utilize the Inuit-Crown Partnership Committee to facilitate work on actions contained in this chapter, as well as to support implementation of obligations in the UN Declaration Act requiring consultation and collaboration with Indigenous peoples. (Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada)
  3. The Crown will provide periodic reporting to the ICPC related to monitoring the implementation of this Chapter. (Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada)
  4. The ICPC will be the exclusive body utilized to review and amend this chapter of the action plan, according to its own procedures and timelines. (Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada)
  5. The Crown will co-develop options to support the permanency of the ICPC, including consideration of legislative measures. (Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada)
  6. Through the ICPC, the Government of Canada will work with Inuit partners to seek the creation of a new and/or revised Cabinet Directive(s) and other tools to support the implementation of the Inuit-Crown Co-Development Principles and the Inuit Nunangat Policy. (Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada)
  7. The Crown will develop Inuit-specific guidelines for applying an Inuit Nunangat Approach, consistent with the Inuit Nunangat Policy, to the effective engagement of Inuit Treaty Organizations or their designates on international issues affecting them. This work will include tracking various departmental practices on enhancing participation and will seek to enhance the participation of Inuit in decision-making on matters which would affect their rights and to advance Canada’s contribution to the work of the entities of the UN system and other intergovernmental organizations in their implementation of article 41. (Global Affairs Canada)

Inuktut revitalization, maintenance, protection and promotion

The Government of Canada will take the following actions in consultation and cooperation with Inuit:

  1. Pursue co-development of regulations with Inuit Treaty Organizations under the Indigenous Languages Act that provide for the provision of Inuktut language federal services in Inuit Nunangat, beginning with Nunavut. (Canadian Heritage)

Health and wellness

The Government of Canada will take the following actions in consultation and cooperation with Inuit:

  1. Through the Inuit-Crown Partnership Committee, federal departments will co-develop legislative and policy options for decision-makers with Inuit Treaty Organizations to create a framework for the processing and sale of Inuit country or traditional foods within Inuit Nunangat, as well as support the expansion of domestic and international trade of these foods. (Canadian Food Inspection Agency, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada)
  2. Support the improvement of health equity for the Inuit and furthering the advancement of Inuit self-determination over health services, including by applying an Inuit Nunangat approach as an important priority for Inuit partners and a longstanding priority of the ICPC. (Indigenous Services Canada)
  3. Recognizing that a cooperative federal-provincial-territorial-Indigenous approach is necessary for the implementation of Canada’s international human rights obligations, make best efforts to encourage provinces and territories to advance the implementation of these obligations in respect of Inuit both within and outside of Inuit Nunangat, including to improve social conditions, such as access to and delivery of health services. This includes using available levers and developing clear and robust strategies, and new approaches where necessary and appropriate. (Various departments)
  4. The Government of Canada will work with Inuit Treaty Organizations or their designates on the realization of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities for Inuit with disabilities. This includes seeking concrete data solutions to better understand the socio-economic situation of Inuit with disabilities as well as identifying data and information gaps that hinder effective monitoring of the status of Inuit with disabilities and potential solutions for remedying those gaps. The Government of Canada will also work with and fund Inuit Treaty Organizations through existing programs, such as the Social Development Partnership Program (Disability), to support the implementation of the Convention for Inuit with disabilities. (Employment and Social Development Canada)

Sovereignty, defence and security

The Government of Canada will take the following actions in consultation and cooperation with Inuit:

  1. Support Inuit self-determination in Inuit Nunangat including through National Defence investments in multi-purpose infrastructure that support Inuit needs, where feasible. (Department of National Defence)
  2. Collaborate with Inuit Treaty Organizations or their designates to jointly identify Inuit- and Inuit Nunangat-specific priorities and considerations for inclusion, where feasible, in national defence policies, programs and initiatives jointly identified by partners whose focus includes Inuit Nunangat. (Department of National Defence)
  3. Recognize the strategic role and contributions Inuit and Inuit communities have, including by prioritizing Inuit access to federal procurement, in relation to Canada's defence policies, programs and initiatives focused on the Inuit Nunangat region. (Department of National Defence)
  4. Support Inuit self-determination by applying an Inuit Nunangat approach to Defence programs and conduct in the Inuit Nunangat region. (Department of National Defence)
  5. In order to protect the safety and security of Inuit and their right and ability to exercise self-determination and self-governance in matters with a nexus to national security, Canada will share information with Inuit Treaty Organizations or their designates to support decision-making. The information shared will be unclassified and/or classified when appropriate security clearances are in place.(Canadian Security Intelligence Service)

Education, early learning and skills development

The Government of Canada will take the following actions in consultation and cooperation with Inuit:

  1. In order to enable Inuit rights holders to exercise their right to establish and control their own educational systems and educational institutions, subject to any self-government agreement, the federal government will partner with Inuit Treaty Organizations in order to establish a policy on federal involvement, funding and other support for Inuit primary and secondary education. (Indigenous Services Canada, Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada)

Economic development and procurement

The Government of Canada will take the following actions in consultation and cooperation with Inuit:

  1. In order to further the implementation of the Nunavut Agreement and to modernize the fisheries management regulatory regime and improve economic development opportunities in the Nunavut Settlement Area, continue the process to co-develop Nunavut Fishery Regulations with Nunavut Tunngavik Inc., Makivik Corporation, the Nunavut Wildlife Management Board and the Government of Nunavut. As part of this process, Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Nunavut Tunngavik Inc. and Makivik Corporation will explore possible amendments to the applicable modern treaties in order to enable the use of Communal Fish Plans as part of the regulatory scheme. (Fisheries and Oceans Canada)