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Liquor plebiscite and public meetings in Arviat

19 October 2020

Public Service Announcement

Liquor plebiscite and public meetings in Arviat

The Minister of Finance has agreed to hold a plebiscite in Arviat asking community members to vote on a potential change to liquor access. A plebiscite will be held on Monday, November 9, 2020, with advanced voting on Monday, November 2, 2020.

The Minister received a petition from residents of Arviat requesting a plebiscite to change their current liquor system from prohibited to a restricted quantities approach. This means that if residents of Arviat vote in favour of this change, they will be able to purchase or import limited amounts of alcohol into the community. The proposed limits are 8.552 litres of beer (24 x 355ml cans) and 8 litres of wine (2 x 4 litre boxes or 10 x 750 ml bottles) every seven days. Under the Liquor Act, at least 60 per cent of voters need to vote “yes” to change the status of a community.

To help the residents of Arviat understand Nunavut’s liquor laws and the proposed changes, the Department of Finance is holding two public meetings. These meetings will take place on Thursday, October 29, 2020, at 12 p.m. and 6 p.m. in the John Ollie Complex. Due to the COVID-19 restrictions, only 100 people or 75% of the rated capacity of the building, whichever is less, may attend public gatherings. In Arviat, this means 100 people may attend each session.

All residents of Arviat are invited to join and discuss the possible changes to the current community liquor system with representatives from the Department of Finance and Nunavut Elections. Refreshments will be provided.

For more information about the upcoming public meeting, please email


Media Contact:

Weichien Chan
Manager, Communications
Department of Finance