February 2022 Message from the Chair & Chief Executive Officer
I first want to take a moment to acknowledge an exciting achievement on behalf of Inuvialuit. At the most recent Board meeting, IRC passed our first law, formally taking on more responsibility for children, youth and families’ wellbeing. With the law, we can better protect cultural continuity, support families to stay together, and build Inuvialuit capacity by establishing Maligaksat, to work for Inuvialuit children and youth wherever they live and with staff in all Inuvialuit communities. Right now, the foster system does not know where our kids are. The new law will make sure information on Inuvialuit is provided so we will know exactly where each child is, how they’re being cared for, close gaps in services and allow Inuvialuit to provide decision-making.
With so much happening, there is not a lot of space for full updates until after the 42 Directors meeting, where IRC benefits from the guidance, insight and strategic planning direction of leadership.
Our portfolio value remains strong and steadily increasing in value to $695M from $563M a year ago. We have done well and we have a diversified portfolio, $34.5 M ahead of budget and $43.5M profit, year to date.
Inuvialuit Land Administration is now 100% staffed by Inuvialuit.
IRC’s advocacy for Inuvialuit has continued directly with Canada in Ottawa with ICPC, the Governor General and meetings at GNWT tables, Council of Leaders over the last couple of months and the work is showing results.
Results like ISR School Foods program (3 years to support hot meals for all children and youth to fuel their learning), community-distributed harvesting equipment and family on the land support, IRC PSE funding with over 200 students currently supported to actively pursue advanced education all come from working with the federal government for reconciliation.
The M-18 Sump remediation project is starting with local contractors and IPC. Winter access to the site will mean that the old sump can be made safe, adequately-contained and taken care of so Inuvialuit can then own and take over this asset with environmental concerns cared for and addressed.
Congratulations to all staff receiving long service awards. We look forward to working with you for many more years and next milestones! Dedicated employees are the foundation of our success and do so much to support the work on behalf of our beneficiaries.
The ISR now faces COVID-19 outbreaks, but communities have each shown clear examples of how leadership can work together to provide information and real support to their members, limit spread and continue to minimize the pandemic impacts.
Quyanaq, quyanainni, koana, thank you,
Duane Ningaqsiq Smith
Chair & Chief Executive Officer
Find previous ICG Updates with Messages from the Chair at Documents on IRC Website.
Photo: During December 2021 meetings in Ottawa, Duane Smith presented a copy of the law Inuvialuit Qitunrariit Inuuniarnikkun Maligaksat to key Federal Ministers and to Canada’s Governor General Mary Simon. Photo credit: Sgt Mathieu St-Amour, Rideau Hall © OSGG, 2021.
Meetings also included Inuit Crown Partnership (ICPC) Leader’s Meeting December 13, 2021 where funding commitments, food security, co-development processes in legislation, implementation of UNDRIP and Inuit Nunangat Policy were discussed.