I saw an announcement by federal government representatives on how an eligible senior would receive additional monies to offset the Covid-19 situation. I think this is a disgrace to the seniors living up North as this is like a drop in the bucket, as the saying goes.

I am from the baby boom generation, putting me in the bracket of senior and I can attest to the fact that our cost-of-living index was not even considered in this payout. Up North, we do not shun the needs of our immediate families’ needs. A couple of my siblings along with myself have purchased our own homes and I have found myself helping others buy some fuel during the winter months. We have helped in buying some basic grocery needs but have had returns far above the dollars spent with country foods and help around the house or snowmobile issues and such. There are only a handful of us seniors living in my community and the majority of them are still trying to fish and harvest with the little monetary assistance through their pensions and top-up system that the feds are paying out. Shameful, absolutely shameful.

These special people have endured a way of life we have forgotten about. Through their experiences of hardship, they have carved out a vision for us younger people in maintaining hope, resilience, patience, giving and absolute inclusiveness. I sure hope this generation shows the respect and appreciation for these special ones who gave us the IQ principles to guide us.

Nunavut Day has come and gone and do we really know and understand why we celebrate it? Some of the people who worked so hard in the development and implementation of our own governance are gone now. My late father John Maksagak was one of these individuals who sacrificed much but put his whole heart into the inception of this land of ours. I celebrate him and all his colleagues living and resting.

The federal government was part and parcel in this transaction but do not seem to appreciate the willingness of Nunavummiut to govern themselves, a sparse population, across the vastness of Nunavut. The hand of colonialism needs to be acknowledged and broken.

For those who were in residential school may remember this prayer we said before each meal; “Lord bless this food to our use and us to thy service, and keep us ever mindful of the needs of others.”

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