I. Organizational Background
Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami (ITK) is the national representational organization for Canada’s 65,000 Inuit, the majority of whom live in four regions, including the Inuvialuit Settlement Region (Northwest Territories), Nunavut, Nunavik (Northern Québec), and Nunatsiavut (Northern Labrador). Collectively, these four regions make up Inuit Nunangat, the Inuit homeland in Canada. Inuit Nunangat includes 51 communities and encompasses roughly 35 percent of Canada’s landmass and more than 50 percent of its coastline. Consistent with its founding purpose, ITK represents the rights and interests of Inuit at the national level through a democratic governance structure that represents all Inuit regions.
The comprehensive land claim agreements that have been settled in Inuit Nunangat form a core component of ITK’s mandate. These land claims have the status of protected treaties under section 35 of the Constitution Act, 1982, and ITK remains committed to working in partnership with the Crown towards full implementation. ITK advocates for policies, programs, and services to address the social, cultural, political, and environmental issues facing our people.
ITK is governed by a Board of Directors that is composed of the following members from the four (4) Land Claims Organizations (LCO’s):
- Chair and CEO, Inuvialuit Regional Corporation (IRC)
- President, Makivik Corporation
- President, Nunavut Tunngavik Inc. (NTI)
- President, Nunatsiavut Government (NG)
In addition to voting members, the following non-voting permanent participant representatives also sit on the Board:
- President, Inuit Circumpolar Council (ICC) Canada
- President, Pauktuutit Inuit Women of Canada
- President, National Inuit Youth Council (NIYC)
II. ITK’s Inuit Tuberculosis Elimination Framework
The elevated rate of tuberculosis (TB) among Inuit is a public health crisis with rates over 300 times that of Canadian-born, non-Indigenous people. In February of 2017, the Inuit-Crown Partnership Committee (ICPC) was established as part of the Government of Canada’s recognition of the unprecedented burden of TB among Inuit as a federal priority. In March 2018, ITK and the Government of Canada committed to reduce the rate of TB across Inuit Nunangat by 50 percent by 2025, and to eliminate TB by 2030. To support these very ambitious goals, there was an initial investment by the Federal Government of $27.5 million over 5 years (2018-2023) for Inuit TB elimination with the funding flowing through ITK to the Inuit regions.
ITK had previously released an Inuit-specific Tuberculosis (TB) Strategy in 2013, which was developed in collaboration with the Inuit Public Health Task Group (IPHTG). Building on this work, in 2018, ITK developed the Inuit Tuberculosis Elimination Framework that is currently being used by Inuit regions to develop TB action plans to eliminate TB in every Inuit community in Canada. It is acknowledged that successful elimination of TB by 2030 will require sustained and substantial additional investments by the Federal Government; significant collaboration across all sectors to improve the overall health and wellbeing of Inuit; and, just as importantly, the involvement of Inuit families and communities that have been impacted by TB in order to establish effective, sustainable, long-term solutions.
Implementation of the Inuit regional TB elimination action plans has been impacted as priorities shifted and health human capacity and other limited resources were re-deployed to meet immediate COVID-19 pandemic response needs. However, the pandemic has renewed public and political interest and calls for action by the federal government and provincial/territorial partners to address critical gaps in housing, poverty, food security, access to health services, and social infrastructure that place Inuit at higher risk for communicable diseases. With every passing month, there is growing pressure globally to ensure TB care and elimination efforts not only resume but improve through leveraging pandemic-related investments in social support programs, public health programming, and research.
ITK is seeking expertise to draft a federal pre-budget submission for the funding needed to eliminate TB from Inuit Nunangat between 2022 and 2030 and ongoing funding beyond to maintain low TB rates. This would include highlighting the progress made towards implementing TB elimination action plans and achieving TB elimination goals to date; determining where gaps continue to exist in TB elimination work across Inuit Nunangat; as well as outlining the ongoing need for the funding investments required to achieve and maintain TB elimination targets. To accomplish this, the successful applicant will work collaboratively with ITK staff, LCO’s (and/or their designate) and Inuit regions to collect the necessary information with which to develop a comprehensive, Inuit-specific TB pre-budget submission that is culturally appropriate and inclusive of options and associated budget(s) for ongoing and future TB programming within Inuit Nunangat.
III. Scope of Work Requirements
The ultimate goal of ITK and the LCO’s (and/or their designate) is to implement long-term system changes to achieve and maintain the elimination of TB from Inuit communities. The TB elimination models in each of the Inuit regions are complex with different strengths, gaps and opportunities. The successful applicant will be required to undertake the following work in consultation and collaboration with ITK staff, and the LCO’s (and/or their designate):
- Conduct an environmental scan and compile information (e.g. relevant background materials, strategic planning documents, policies, evaluations, reports etc.) on the TB elimination programs in each of the Inuit regions to articulate progress on TB action plans, as well as identify existing gaps in programming since receiving funding in 2018;
- Draft a report on the current epidemiology of TB across Inuit Nunangat.
- Identify and leverage pandemic-related investments and lessons learned in support of methods to eliminate TB in Inuit Nunangat by 2030.
- In collaboration with ITK staff and LCO’s (and/or their designate) establish what actions have been effective, and what funding would be required to scale up current regional TB elimination action plans within their jurisdictions to reach short, medium and long-term TB goals;
- Develop a plan and timeline for working with regional staff to draft, validate, and refine the final pre-budget submission document. This would include a developing a discussion guide for key informants and meeting with each regional LCO (and/or their designate), TB regional action plan coordinators, and other relevant contributors as identified by regional LCOs at a minimum twice virtually and communicating by email. These discussions would include collecting information, assisting regions in a broad scale up of their regional TB elimination action plans to inform a federal budget proposal, and validating drafts of the pre-budget submission document.
- Based on the information collected, develop a comprehensive TB pre-budget submission, with options and associated budgets that are substantive for an Inuit-specific approach to address TB in Inuit Nunangat, for submission to Indigenous Services Canada to support a federal budget proposal for TB elimination in Inuit Nunangat.
- Present versions to ITK staff, LCO’s (and/or their designateand other partners for feedback, and revise the report as necessary. This may require more than one revision.
- Complete all revisions and finalize the submission.
- Respond to questions and requests for clarification from federal partners after the initial pre-budget document is submitted.
IV. Summary of Request for Proposals
Through this RFP, we are seeking an experienced applicant with an in-depth knowledge of Inuit within Inuit Nunangat, as well as their governance structures. We require a specialist in writing Government of Canada pre-budget submissions who can support ITK in their request for seeking additional TB funding investments that is evidence-based, consistent, and of high quality. We will assess proposals based on the following criteria (please include in your proposal):
- Qualifications of the applicant including education, past experience, interest and knowledge of Inuit health and wellness priorities, as well as a proven track record developing and completing comprehensive government reports and budget submissions;
- Project description, outlining a sound, comprehensive approach that covers all tasks outlined in Section III (Scope of Work Requirements);
- Description of a collaborative and participatory approach to this work, including detailed steps of approach for involving regional staff in developing, validating and refining the final deliverable;
- Achievable milestones with timelines;
- Budget(s) and budget justifications that fit with the project description, scope, and milestones that are inclusive of estimates of the level of effort for each team member and the daily and hourly billing rate for each;
- Demonstrated knowledge and understanding of Inuit Nunangat with respect to the unique political, geographical and cultural autonomy of each of the four (4) Inuit regions;
- Knowledge and consideration of ITK strategies, frameworks and action plans; and,
- Experience working in partnership with Inuit organizations.
We anticipate that this work will begin mid-May, with an initial version ready for submission by August 16, 2021. The work is expected to continue sporadically in response to federal requests for information or clarifications until December 1, 2021.
Scoring: Proposals will be scored out of a total of 100 points, including up to 10 points for overall quality and understanding of the assignment; up to 20 points for methodology and approach; up to 40 for the qualifications and capacity of the proponent; and, up to 30 points for the budget and cost-effectiveness. The assignment will be awarded to the applicant with the highest score following a verification interview.
Budget: Value for money will be a key consideration in assessing the proposals.
Submission Deadline: Your electronic submission should be sent by 4:00 pm EST on May 17, 2021 to Darlene Hackett, Policy Analyst, at [email protected].
Questions: Please direct any questions in writing only to Deborah Van Dyk, Senior Policy Analyst, at [email protected].