NAN Statement on Nutrition North Canada motion defeated in House of Commons
June 12, 2015
THUNDER BAY: Nishnawbe Aski Nation (NAN) Deputy Grand Chief Goyce Kakegamic is pleased that the Official Opposition presented a motion in the House of Commons this week aimed at fixing Nutrition North Canada. The motion called for the immediate inclusion of the 50 communities being left out of Nutrition North, as well as renewed efforts to improve the well-being of Canadians living in isolated communities in Northern Canada.
“NAN has been working collaboratively with MP Charlie Angus to bring our concerns and recommendations to the government and I feel our efforts are keeping this issue alive and in the forefront of government discussions,” said NAN Deputy Grand Chief Goyce Kakegamic. “Nutrition North Canada must be more equitable so that funding reflects the real circumstances that our communities are facing and Northerners need to be full partners in determining ways of directly providing the subsidy to remote northern communities.”
The motion reflected recommendations NAN provided to MP Angus (Timmins-James Bay), the Auditor General, the Nutrition North Canada Advisory Board and the federal government on ways to improve the program by including all remote and fly-in northern communities in the full subsidy, creating equitable eligibility criteria based on real circumstances, reinstating subsidy for hunting and fishing supplies and the development of a Northern Food Strategy to find solutions to high rates of food insecurity.
“We need to stay focused on the real issues that impact people on a daily basis and not make the food subsidy program a political platform,” said Kakegamic.
A 2014 report by the Auditor General of Canada found that the food subsidy program is not working and should be replaced with a new approach.