Call to Action # 20

In order to address the jurisdictional disputes concerning Aboriginal people who do not reside on reserves, we call upon the federal government to recognize, respect, and address the distinct health needs of the Métis, Inuit, and off-reserve Aboriginal peoples.

Why “In Progress”?

Nov. 3, 2023: The federal government released “Co-developing distinctions-based Indigenous health legislation” that directly addresses off-reserve First Nations and distinct health needs of the Métis and Inuit.

The Well Living House, part of the Centre for Research on Inner City Health at St. Michaels’s Hospital in Toronto, through their “Our Health Counts” health surveys in Hamilton, Toronto, Thunder Bay, Ottawa and London have clearly documented how badly Statistics Canada underestimates the urban Indigenous population who are then underserved even more through inadequate budget and policy decisions based on poor data. The Yellowhead Institute also identifies in their Policy Brief: “Colonialism of the Curve: Indigenous Communities and Bad COVID Data” that “specific systemic barriers to the collection of relevant and valid Indigenous data negatively impacts Indigenous health and lives.

”Federal Government is working through the Canada Métis Nation Accord and the Inuit-Crown Partnership Committee to address the distinct health needs of Métis and Inuit. The off-reserve needs of First Nations are not explicitly addressed on the official government of Canada website.

Budget 2021 included $1.2B to support COVID-19 responses in Indigenous communities and $1.4B over 5 years to maintain essential health care services for First Nations and Inuit, continue work to transform First Nations Helath systems and respond to the health impacts of climate change. Budget 2021 also included $597.6M over three years for distinctions-based mental health and wellness strategy for First Nations, Inuit and the Metis Nation.

On June 2, 2020 the Federal government announced $85 million in funding for the construction and operation of 12 new shelters for Indigenous women and girls: 10 in the provinces and 2 in the territories as well as ongoing operating costs plus funding for the Métis related shelter provision and projects.

On Jan. 26, 2021 Indigenous Services Canada committed to fund the construction and operations of shelters for Inuit women and children across Inuit Nunangat as well as in urban centres. Funding for the new shelters will be part of the $724.1 million for a comprehensive Violence Prevention Strategy as announced in the 2020 Fall Economic Statement. The government will continue to work with Pauktuutit and other Inuit partners to determine the locations and define the details of the projects to best meet the needs of women and families seeking shelter.

Current Status

In Progress

Call to Action
last updated

March 05, 2024

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