The Governments of Canada and Nunavut sign two bilateral agreements to end gender-based violence

Press Release

From: Women and Gender Equality Canada

September 29, 2023

Living a life free from violence is a fundamental human right, but gender-based violence (GBV) continues to be a significant barrier to achieving gender equality in Canada. It is one of the most pervasive, deadly, and deeply rooted human rights violations of our time that affects people of all backgrounds, genders, and ages.

Today, the Honourable Marci Ien, Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Youth, joined by the Honourable Margaret Nakashuk, Nunavut’s Minister responsible for the Status of Women, and the Honourable John Main, Nunavut’s Minister of Health, made a historic announcement of up to $17 million to help the victims and survivors of gender-based violence.

The Government of Canada will be investing up to $16.4 million over four years to support the implementation of the National Action Plan to End Gender-based Violence in Nunavut. This investment will support the Government of Nunavut to create and enhance programs and supports for survivors of gender-based violence and their families. It will also increase knowledge and awareness amongst frontline service providers, women and girls, men and boys, and children and youth. This will be accomplished through awareness campaigns, workshops and knowledge sharing aimed at understanding the root causes, warning signs, and impacts of gender-based violence and ways to prevent it.

The Government of Canada will be also investing $500,000 to support crisis hotlines in Nunavut to offer more robust services, resources, and supports to serve the urgent needs of those experiencing gender-based violence and their families. This announcement marks the last of 13 agreements with provincial and territorial governments to support crisis lines across the country.

Coordinated and collaborative actions from federal, provincial, and territorial governments are essential in effectively preventing and addressing gender-based violence. Provincial and territorial governments will continue working in partnership with Indigenous partners, survivors, civil society organizations, front-line service providers, municipalities, the private sector and researchers to implement the National Action Plan within their jurisdictions.


“Today’s historic announcement builds on years of federal, provincial and territorial collaboration, working with Indigenous partners, survivors, experts, and frontline organizations. We know that the issue of gender-based violence disproportionally impacts women and girls living in rural and remote communities, and support for survivors is difficult to access. By partnering with the territorial government, we are making sure that these supports are strong, culturally relevant and respond to the needs of Indigenous communities.”

The Honourable Marci Ien, Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Youth

“Nunavut Inuit are the victims of violent crime at a rate of 12 to 13 times higher than women in other jurisdictions of Canada. The National Inquiry on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls showed that this violence is deeply rooted in colonialism, and has created a legacy of violence in homes, relationships, and in institutions. The funds from the National Action Plan to End Gender-Based Violence will assist the Government of Nunavut in understanding and treating the root causes of gender-based violence in our territory, by increasing advocacy and programs for violence prevention efforts. The funds will also enable the Qulliit Nunavut Status of Women Council to focus on increasing awareness of gender-based violence, including why it is harmful, what community members can do, and how to stand against it.”

The Honourable Margaret Nakashuk, Minister responsible for the Status of Women in Nunavut

“The Government of Nunavut recognizes that gender-based violence is not just a singular issue but a deeply rooted social challenge that requires multifaceted solutions. To effectively address gender-based violence, it is imperative we embrace a holistic, multi-level governmental approach, engage Inuit organizations and drive initiatives to support survivors of gender-based violence and their families. With financial support from the Government of Canada, the establishment of a crisis hotline is a vital step in providing immediate support to those in need. Today, we acknowledge the ongoing work and collaborative efforts between the Department of Family Services, the Department of Health and the federal government to provide the support and resources needed create a safer and more equitable society for all Nunavummiut.”

The Honourable John Main, Nunavut’s Minister of Health

Quick facts

  • Budget 2021 provided a significant investment of approximately $601.3 million over five years to address gender-based violence, including $30 million for crisis hotlines to support the urgent needs to Canadians to prevent the escalation of gender-based violence.
  • Building on this investment, Budget 2022 committed $539.3 million over five years to support provinces and territories in their efforts to implement the recently launched National Action Plan to End Gender-Based Violence.
  • Organizations operating crisis hotlines in Nunavut report that the volume of calls increased during the pandemic, as victims of violence and those seeking related services experienced perceived and real barriers to safely accessing services.
  • In 2019, rates of police-reported intimate partner violence showed that women in Nunavut were almost 7 times more likely to experience intimate partner violence than men, the largest difference reported among Canada’s provinces and territories.
  • Children and youth, specifically girls, were more likely to be victims of family violence in the territories than any other province, with Nunavut reporting the highest rates of family violence against children and youth in 2019.

Associated links


Nanki Singh
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Youth

Media Relations
Women and Gender Equality Canada

Government of Nunavut

Danarae Sommerville
A/ Manager of Communications
Department of Health

Tony Canny
Communications Specialist
Department of Family Services


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