April 24, 2007

OPINIONS / ARTICLES: Nunatsiavut government is proactive in dealing with suicide

Nunatsiavut government is proactive in dealing with suicide
Reader - The Labradorian

Dear Editor:

I am writing to express my concerns regarding the article printed in The Labradorian, April 16, 2007 entitled "Are Inuit suicide problems being ignored by the Nunatsiavut Government".

As President of the Nunatsiavut Government it was with great shock and disappointment that I read this article. The Nunatsiavut Government's Department of Health & Social Development (DHSD) has made suicide a priority and has recently sought funding for several new initiatives.

It is very concerning that an article such as this would appear without any consultation with the government department that has been working so diligently towards finding ways to combat the devastating problem that has touched so many of our people.

The Nunatsiavut Government has made the issues of suicide, alcohol and drugs a priority since its inception and even before. This was made evident by the public consultations held by our government last spring.


Youth who are participating in support groups, activities, media projects, traveling across Canada to work with other youth on this issue and volunteering their time, feel that their contribution has not been recognized. Nunatsiavut Government's Deputy Minister of Health and Social Development just returned from Halifax where she presented along with two youth from Hopedale on our initiatives related to suicide prevention and they were highlighted as the best in Atlantic Canada. Hopedale has a suicide support group attended twice a week by approximately 30 youth.

The DHSD purchased video equipment and provided training in each Labrador Inuit community for one week to build youth media teams. The final cut of these videos is being completed as we speak. This was identified by our youth as a priority and also by the National Inuit Youth Council.


William Andersen - President, Nunatsiavut Government
Chris Schuepp
Young People's Media Network - Coordinator
Youth Media Consulting GbR
c/o ECMC (European Centre for Media Competence)
Bergstr. 8 / 11th floor
D-45770 Marl - Germany
Tel./Fax: +49 2365 502480
Mobile: +49 176 23107083
Email: cschuepp@unicef.org
URL: www.unicef.org/magic
Mailing list: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/youthful-media
The YPMN is supported by UNICEF and hosted by the ECMC.
The opinions and views expressed in this message and/or articles & websites
linked to from this message do not necessarily reflect the views of the
United Nations or its agencies.

No comments: