Nunavut has been a long road and yes, that road is still unfolding. Once Inuit unity was formed, Inuit Tapirisat of Canada or ITC, now known as Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami (ITK) started the Inuit Use and Occupancy Study which later was presented to the Government of Canada in 1973. It told of how land is, and was, used.
Negotiations were started in 1976 between the federal government and the Tungavik Federation of Nunavut. Inuit researched the past and present for a report that was presented in 1982. Inuit opted not to be included in the Indian Act, because the leaders wanted Inuit to pay taxes and achieve a modern standard of living.
Inuit voted in favour of the Agreement in 1992, a plebiscite with a question of simply a yes or no to Nunavut. In 1993 Parliament of Canada voted in favour of the Agreement and made it law the same year. 13 years ago Nunavut Territory was created, still going through rounds of Implementation agreements, including Inuit Impact Benefits Agreements, and many of the Articles still need the legal issues examined.
It is seen as a contract in which Inuit exchange Aboriginal title to all their traditional land in the Nunavut Settlement Area for defined rights and benefits. Nunavummiut retained 18 per cent of the land including mineral rights of two per cent, and a cash settlement of $1.173 billion of which Inuit do not get dividends and a territoy with an elected government to serve the interests of all Nunavummiut - a public government and not a self-government as most seem to think.
The Nunavut Trust was created to look after the funds and the interest will then be used for the good of all Inuit. The newly created Government of Nunavut will respect Inuit values, a population of 85 per cent of which are Inuit.