Last Wednesday, after a meeting with heads of government, health officials, police, and even the local fire department, Joe Dicker sat down and wrote a letter asking people to stay out of his town. The AngajukKak (or mayor) of Nain asked that anyone planning on coming to town—which sits on the north coast of Labrador in Nunatsiavut—to please consider the nature of their visit. If it wasn’t absolutely necessary, he asked that they “stay away.” The next day, the Nunatsiavut government issued its own directive, asking that all non-essential travel to and between Labrador’s Inuit communities be cancelled. “Pandemics have had catastrophic impacts in Nunatsiavut in the past, and all efforts must be taken to help prevent the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus to all Labrador Inuit communities,” the release said. Nunatsiavut is under the same public health emergency as the rest of Newfoundland and Labrador, as officials scramble to…
The recent provincial budget highlights structural issues with how services in Labrador are financed. Rather than assigning blame to various governments it is necessary that the provincial and federal governments re-evaluate how services are provided to isolated ‘territories’ lacking self-governance.
Here’s what connecting Labrador’s northernmost communities to the rest of the Big Land would likely entail.
The pride and realities from a region you probably don’t know enough about