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Constance MacIntosh and expert panel report about the challenges of food insecurity in Canada's North

Posted by School of Law on April 4, 2014 in News, Research

The Council of Canadian Academies released a report last week that outlined the challenges of food security among First Nations, Inuit, and Métis communities in Northern Canada. The report, entitled "Aboriginal Food Security in Northern Canada: An Assessment of the State of Knowledge", noted that almost 70% of Nunavut preschoolers lived in food insecure households, with some children having gone an entire day without eating. The report finds that the average annual cost of groceries for a family of four in Nunavut would be $19,760, but that about half of Inuit adults earn less than $20,000 per year. 

The report identifies connections between food security and health, intergenerational well-being, and governance issues. It concludes that while there is a nutrition transition occurring in the North, and uncertainties associated with climate change, that policy-makers and northern communities are positioned to develop effective responses.

The President of Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami and the President of the Inuit Circumpolar Council – Canada gave a formal statement on the Report that: “On behalf of Inuit in Canada, we welcome the release of the report and acknowledge the important evidence it presents. It reaffirms the need to address food insecurity in Inuit Nunangat and the need to involve the people and communities most impacted by food insecurity in the development of long-term solutions.”

The report represents the work of a 15-member expert panel that took a holistic and people-centered approach to food insecurity in the North over the course of 15 months. Shulich School of Law is proud to note that our own Professor Constance MacIntosh, Director, Dalhousie Health Law Institute, was the legal expert on the panel that produced this report.

For more information or to view the report in its entirety, please visit the Council of Canadian Academies’ website at www.scienceadvice.ca.