Background Content

Justice (25-42)

RCMP’s new core values take into account Inuit culture: Nunavut commander

April 23, 2024

Set of guiding principles updated for 1st time in 25 years

RCMP Chief Supt. Andrew Blackadar, commanding officer of the force’s Nunavut division, poses in Iqaluit with a copy of its updated core values. (Photo by Corey Larocque)

NationTalk: Nunatsiaq News – The RCMP commander in Nunavut has signed the service’s updated core values, which he says will bring the local force more in line with community needs and culture.

Earlier this year, RCMP Commissioner Michael Duheme asked all commanding officers to sign the service’s renewed core values and to display them.

The values are:

  • Act with integrity;
  • Show respect;
  • Demonstrate compassion;
  • Take responsibility;
  • Serve with excellence.

Nunavut Chief Supt. Andrew Blackadar explained in an interview April 15 how officers will integrate them into their work in the North.

He noted that while these guiding principles are being implemented nationally, they will be instituted in local ways. In Nunavut, they will be brought in line with Inuit Qaujimajatuqangit, or IQ principles, which are the societal values by which the Inuit live.

For example, the IQ principle of Inuuqatigiittiarniq means “respecting others, relationships and caring for people.”

“So it’s about relationships and caring for people and showing respect,” Blackadar said. “Being open, welcoming and inclusive and demonstrating compassion [which] falls within our renewed core values.”

The core value of showing respect aligns with the IQ principle of Tunnganarniq, which means “fostering good spirits by being open, welcoming and inclusive,” Blackadar said.

He added the new values also take into account the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s calls to action, as well as the calls to action that stem from the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls final report, and reconciliation in general.

“We’re also taking into account the LGBTQ community,” Blackadar said.

He cited cultural education as a key part of implementing the renewed core values.

Nunavut RCMP has a cultural advisory committee which meets quarterly with representatives from the majority of communities in the territory.

Police also meet regularly with elders and other community groups. Part of that programming includes something Blackadar called mental health first aid, but tailored for the North.

“One of the things that I’ll be asking them to help me out with is to give that education to our police officers,” Blackadar said.

The RCMP’s list of core values has not been updated in 25 years. The new list was introduced by former RCMP commissioner Brenda Lucki.

“Everything that we do in the community is built on trust,” Blackadar said.

“If we don’t have trust, then we don’t have respect. And if we don’t have respect, it is hard to do our job within the community.”

By Jorge Antunes