Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Hiring and Housing

After getting the news last night about being the only returning qalunaat in the fall, I had another curve-ball tossed my way this afternoon. I got a call from the superintendent and it looks like I'll be getting a housemate in August. I half-expected this to happen eventually. There simply just isn't enough teacher housing here for one person have a unit of their own. Under GN legislation, the whole housing issue falls outside the list of things that can be negotiated by the teachers union. (This was also the case in the Northwest Territories when I taught there back in 2000.)

Ironically, the superintendent's call came as I was clearing out the tiny second bedroom and reorganizing all my junk. (In the process I did come across 8 cans of sliced carrots from my 2004 sealift I forgot I had.....yummy.) It's like I knew in advance somehow that the hammer was about to fall. Hopefully it won't be too cramped in here in August. My unit is only about 600 square feet. But at least I get the larger of the two bedrooms.

Lack of housing, not just for teachers, is a major problem here as in every other community. Unfortunately, it doesn't look like this will improve anytime in the near future. This will make it increasingly difficult for the GN to attract and hold onto good teachers. But, I've firmly decided I will be staying so I will see how things work out. I mean, really. I AM heading off to Europe in a couple weeks so life could be much worse.

Hopefully, though, I will be able to get in touch with my prospective roomie before he arrives in August so we don't end up with 2 of everything. I know my blog was given out to perspective new hires as a way of introducing them to Arctic Bay. Hopefully he comes across this post. If not, I just hope the guy can pack really light!


Kara and Matt said...

We are so glad that we bought a house when we moved to Kugluktuk. There are a lot of open spots to rent, but it is so expensive! For a two bedroom place, I would guess to be about 900sq.ft., you can pay around $1500 a month. Our mortgage isn't much more than that and we will have the place paid off in 5 more years! I think that has been one of the best purchases we have ever made. And now that the GN is getting out of housing, it is driving the price of houses up! We could sell now and get 50k more than what we paid for it.