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Inuit Language Incentive Policy approved

18 September 2017

News Release

Inuit Language Incentive Policy approved

IQALUIT, Nunavut (September 18, 2017) – In an effort to support employees to use the Inuit Language as a working language of the public service, the Government of Nunavut (GN) recently approved the Inuit Language Incentive Policy, which will be implemented beginning October 2, 2017.

"This commitment by our government is an important component of the GN’s Human Resources Strategy 2014-2018," said Minister of Finance Keith Peterson. "Employees will be recognized, rewarded and incentivized to increase proficiency in the Inuit Language."

GN employees who demonstrate proficiency will be paid an annual allowance based on their proficiency level: fluency – $1,500; fluency plus reading and writing – $2,400; and language expert – $5,000. Language testing to assess proficiency level will be done by Inuit Uqausinginnik Taiguusiliuqtiit (IUT).

"This is a concrete example on how our government can protect and promote our language," said Minister of Culture and Heritage George Kuksuk. "It will help strengthen the use of Inuktut in government workplaces, while sending a clear message to our young people that skills in Inuktut are valued and important for future employment."

"IUT is pleased to collaborate with the GN on this exciting project," said IUT chair Mary Thompson. "Through rigorous assessments of GN employees’ language abilities, this will help to promote quality Inuktut in the public service."

This policy is one of the ways the GN can fulfill its obligations under the Inuit Language Protection Act (ILPA). The ILPA is in place to ensure that territorial institutions identify and implement positive measures to increase the use of the Inuit Language in the workplace, and to improve the delivery of services provided by the GN to the public in the Inuit Language.


Media Contact:

Denise Grandmaison
Manager, Communications
Department of Finance

Dan Pimentel
Communications Manager
Department of Culture and Heritage

Solomon Awa
Manager of Language Marketing
Inuit Uqausinginnik Taiguusiliuqtiit