Member of Parliament for Nunavut Mumilaaq Qaqqaq says she spoke to the mayor Arviat Joe Savikataaq Jr after a local state of emergency was declared by the hamlet. Qaqqaq asked how she could show support the community of 2800 during the state of emergency. Mayor Joe Jr says his priority for his community is to stay positive to support them and not put guilt on his community.
Qaqqaq says overcrowding is part of the spread of COVID19– As part of her message to Arviat, Qaqqaq wrote “I saw overcrowding [in Arviat]and the community members being so patient in waiting for assistance….” talking about her territory wide tour back in August 2020, where she visited communities including Arviat to look at housing crisis in Nunavut. Qaqqaq wrote “We know that things like lack of housing and affordable living help keep covid in Arviat. This is no ones fault in Arviat or Nunavut.“. Qaqqaq says she blames the Trudeau Government and the governments before including the Conservative party for not listening to Inuit about the cry for lack of housing in Nunavut. “I will continue to bring your voice to the House of Commons. I had reached out to the mayor as the leader for Arviat, I encourage community members to contact my office as well” wrote in her message to Arviat.
“Ignore social media and continue being positive” The community has been in lockdown for more than a hundred days. It was supposed to ease their restrictions in late January but confirmed cases of COVID19 came back. Qaqqaq wrote “Arviat you are strong, this pandemic has been tiresome but it can be done. We can get through it.” In these difficult times let’s focus on support and love. “Don’t pay attention to other communities that don’t know the reality of what’s happening in Arviat.”