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Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations, Carolyn Bennett, was in Arviat, Nunavut to deliver an apology for the federal government’s forced relocation of Ahiarmiut away from their homeland. In 1950, the federal government moved the Ahiarmiut from their homes inland from Hudson’s Bay for the first time. 80 families were forced onto airplanes and were relocated from Ennadai Lake to an island in Nultin Lake; “They did not get to bring basic tools, like axes, caibou hides to make new shelters or other necessities for survival. They were never consulted beforehand, they did not get an explanation and they never gave their permission to be moved.” Because of this, many people got sick and died. The Ahiarmiut walked 100 kilometres through snow to return home to Ennadai Lake and the government moved them a second time to North Henik and Oftedal Lakes, where more Ahiarmiut died. The government then moved the group for a third time to Arviat where, “They were held in police custody, their caribou skin clothing was destroyed and they were discouraged from engaging in traditional activities like drum dancing.”

To the 21 survivors and their families, Bennett said, “I would also like to acknowledge those Ahiarmiut who lost their lives as a result of the relocations and who have passed away in the years since. This apology is a tribute to their spirits and their memories. It is also an opportunity for all Canadians to learn about and reflect upon a dark chapter in our history.”

https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/north/ahiarmiut-apology-federal-government-1.4986934?cmp=rss