Following a public backlash over a proposed new Gateway sign, the Town of Inuvik has released a FAQ detailing several aspects of the process, including a list of correspondences the town reached out to, the origin of the initial sign and reasons why it needs to be replaced.
“An important mention to accompany the enclosed statements, is that although we specifically acknowledge the organizations that were originally contacted and which ones replied, by no way implies that the Town of Inuvik feels that our local Indigenous Governments have not been engaged in the process or that they do not care for and advocate on behalf of their people and artists,” said tourism and economic director Jackie Challis in a statement. “We very much recognize that these governments, much like ours, have a myriad of priorities and often schedules that are committed many months in advance.
“By including who we originally approached is only in response to the public perception and the media implications that we did not attempt to seek consultation from the community. Further to this we do not wish to assign blame or otherwise indicate that our local artist community is also not interested, but rather we present a matter-of-fact list of those organizations that were contacted.
“Our intention is now and will continue to be to learn from the past, to strive to do better, and to rely on our local residents to collaborate and engage with us in the future.”
Read the town’s FAQ here.