Current Problems: Education (6-12)

Exploring Theme: "Indigenous Identity"

Updates on this page: 42
 

July 8, 2024


‘Growing tension’ inside the public service over Indigenous self-identification

Indigenous Services Canada’s top bureaucrat addresses topic in leaked blog to staff CBC Indigenous: Indigenous Services Canada’s top official addressed the “contentious issue” of Indigenous identity in the public service by urging greater honesty in self-identification, in a recent internal blog leaked to CBC Indigenous. “The key is to honestly tell your truth,” wrote deputy minister...

June 27, 2024


Nunavut judge sentences Toronto woman to 3 years prison for Inuit identity fraud

Karima Manji, seen in a police mugshot from 2015, after being convicted of defrauding her then employer, the March of Dimes Non-Profit Housing Corporation. Manji is about to be sentenced again, this time for the Inuit identity fraud she carried out to get her twin daughters scholarships and business opportunities only available to Inuit. Her...

June 18, 2024


Canada must act to end the pretendian problem

NationTalk: Policy Options – Britain and Canada shaped the definition of Indigenous identity and now some people use shifting definitions to assume it, to great benefit. When the French and the British started staking their land claims on Turtle Island, they also began what became a centuries-long, surreptitious and destructive practice of interfering with Indigenous...

May 23, 2024


MUN has to weed out false Indigenous claims, report says — but the path forward is unclear

First Peoples Group report on Indigenous verification draws ire of NunatuKavut community council CBC News: An independent consultant has given Memorial University its final report on Indigenous verification. Now it’s up to the university to decide who is Indigenous and who is not, and in Newfoundland and Labrador, that’s no easy question. The university hired First Peoples...

May 15, 2024


Indigenous leaders adopt declaration condemning identity theft

Delegates also adopt resolution denouncing disputed Inuit identity claims of NunatuKavut in Labrador CBC Indigenous: First Nations, Inuit and Red River Métis leaders unanimously adopted what they’re calling a historic declaration condemning Indigenous identity theft Wednesday afternoon in Winnipeg. Delegates from Ontario First Nations, northern Labrador Inuit and Manitoba Métis carried the resolution by consensus, capping the two-day Indigenous...

May 14, 2024


Graphic novel draws the ire of Manitoba Métis Federation, Métis National Council

APTN News: A graphic novel published by a group called the Métis Nation of Canada (MNOC) is making the Manitoba Métis Federation and the Métis National Council unlikely allies. Both are claiming the novel, Rocking Spurs The Anti-Bullying Tour, is cultural appropriation by a group that doesn’t truly exist. “There is no such thing as Eastern...

May 14, 2024


‘Where did you suffer?’ Conference kicks off in Winnipeg on Pretendians

APTN New: A video highlighting infamous “pretendians” plays just as delegates enter the Indigenous Identity Fraud Summit in Winnipeg hosted by the Manitoba Métis Federation, or MMF and the Chiefs of Ontario. “Because these people are after our rights, they’re after our resources and they’re after an opportunity to take from us what we have...

April 24, 2024


Abenaki in Quebec take identity fraud concerns to the United Nations

Odanak, Wôlinak leadership and youth oppose groups recognized in Vermont  CBC Indigenous: A digital billboard lit up New York City’s Times Square last week with a message from two Abenaki communities in Quebec: that they are the “sole guardians of Abenaki identity.” A delegation of the Abenaki Council of Odanak, Wôlinak and the Assembly of First...

April 21, 2024


I may have to stop writing plays with Native characters

Special to The Globe and Mail: Opinion – Drew Hayden Taylor – In today’s educational system, Indigenous theatre and literature are frequently part of the curriculum. The stories of the Indigenous people of Canada are being studied by students from the dominant culture, and by students from other cultures from around the world. This is...

April 11, 2024


Identity summit brings leaders together to discuss rampant Indigenous identity theft

NationTalk: Toronto, ON – The Manitoba Métis Federation (MMF), the National Government of the Red River Métis, and the Chiefs of Ontario (COO), are pleased to announce an Identity Summit aimed at tackling rampant identity theft faced by many Indigenous Nations in Canada today. Co-hosted by both MMF and COO, the summit will take place...

March 11, 2024


Cree sisters accuse childhood abuser of Indigenous identity fraud in court

Algonquins of Ontario ex-representative Katherine Cannon appeals; judge declines to rule on identity WARNING: This story contains details some readers may find distressing. CBC Indigenous: In a Peterborough, Ont., courtroom last year, three Cree sisters unfolded the difficult stories of their childhoods. They recalled the beatings their aunt by marriage routinely meted out. They alleged Katherine...

February 12, 2024


President of Nunavut Tunngavik Inc. says dropping charges against Gill twins ‘not acceptable’

Community reaction after a quick end to a dramatic story of fraudulent NTI enrollment cards. APTN News: The president of Nunavut Tunngavik Inc. says having charged dropped against the Toronto twins who said they were Inuit and received thousands of dollars in scholarship money wasn’t right. “Colonization consisted largely of the theft of our lands...

February 9, 2024


Mother in Inuit identity fraud case pleads guilty, charges against daughters withdrawn

Karima Manji and her daughters were charged with fraud over $5,000 in September 2023 CBC Indigenous: A Toronto mother involved in a case of Inuit identity fraud has pleaded guilty in a Nunavut courtroom, according to her lawyer. John Scott Cowan said Karima Manji, the mother of Amira and Nadya Gill, entered the plea Friday...

January 7, 2024


Indigenous faculty raise concerns about Dalhousie University’s proposed identification process

CBC News: Two law professors at Dalhousie University say the school’s proposed process of verifying Indigenous heritage risks retraumatizing staff, students and faculty subjected to it, and could exclude those with legitimate claims. Last year, the Halifax university created a task force to address how it should handle false claims of Indigenous identity. It issued its...

November 30, 2023


Buffy Sainte-Marie’s claims of Cree ancestry and birth on Sask. First Nation removed from her website

Singer says material was removed to protect those who defended her in wake of CBC investigation CBC Indigenous: The biography of Buffy Sainte-Marie on her official website no longer claims she is a Cree woman “likely” born on the Piapot First Nation in Saskatchewan.  The changes were made on Buffysainte-marie.com days after CBC released its Oct. 27...

November 23, 2023


Self-proclaimed Métis group sparks debate with shop opening in Ottawa

Critics accuse Métis Nation of Canada of engaging in identity theft, cultural appropriation CBC Indigenous: Inside “The Métis Place,” not far from the food court in an east Ottawa mall, you’ll find a floor-to-ceiling exhibit of tanned pelts, fringed buckskin moccasins and woven birch-bark baskets, just past a rack of orange Every Child Matters shirts....

November 23, 2023


Buffy Sainte-Marie pushes back against CBC investigation contradicting claims to Indigenous ancestry

‘Being “Indian” has little do with sperm tracking and colonial record keeping,’ singer says CBC News: Buffy Sainte-Marie is pushing back on a recent CBC News investigation that questions her Indigenous heritage, maintaining she has never lied about her identity. The iconic singer, songwriter and activist says the story by CBC’s The Fifth Estate was full of mistakes and...

November 8, 2023


What’s the Point of “Pretendian” Investigations?

The latest revelation, about Buffy Sainte-Marie, is convincing, damning, and strikingly incomplete A 2015 photo of Buffy Sainte-Marie performing at the Interstellar Rodeo in Edmonton, AB.(Levi Manchak / Flickr) The Tyee: The Walrus – ON OCTOBER 27, the CBC’s investigative documentary program, The Fifth Estate, released an episode probing the background of singer, activist, and Canadian icon Buffy Sainte-Marie....

October 28, 2023


Acting Piapot chief, other Sask. Indigenous people react to CBC investigation into Buffy Sainte-Marie

Acting chief of Piapot First Nation says his community will not turn their back on Sainte-Marie Alexander Quon · CBC News · Posted: Oct 27, 2023 9:11 PM EDT | Last Updated: October 28 CBC News: Posted: Oct 27, 2023, Last Updated: October 28 – The acting chief of Piapot First Nation says his community will not turn its...

October 27, 2023


Who is the real Buffy Sainte-Marie?

Buffy Sainte-Marie’s claims to Indigenous ancestry are being contradicted by members of the iconic singer-songwriter’s own family and an extensive CBC investigation. CBC News: When Buffy Sainte-Marie strolled onto Sesame Street in 1975, she was making history. The Dec. 9 episode was the launch of the program’s efforts to present Indigenous culture to millions of viewers. Sainte-Marie opened...

October 27, 2023


First Nations professors say Sainte-Marie story raises valid questions about artist’s Indigeneity

APTN News: Two First Nations academics say they believe a new documentary that questions iconic artist Buffy Sainte-Marie’s Indigeneity raises some serious issues that need to be explored. “Was she Indigenous at birth,” Toronto Metropolitan University professor Pam Palmater asked. “Yes or no? What does the evidence say? If she wasn’t, was she adopted as...

October 26, 2023


Buffy Sainte-Marie speaks out regarding questions of Cree ancestry

Buffy Sainte-Marie has issued a video and written statement ahead of a documentary that is expected to question her Cree ancestry.  APTN News: World-renowned singer-songwriter Buffy Sainte-Marie is releasing information about her past ahead of a scheduled CBC documentary that is expected to question her Cree ancestry. Sainte-Marie’s publicist reached out to APTN News offering...

October 2, 2023


Bill C-53 Rewards Indigenous Identity Theft – Statement by Minister Will Goodon

NationTalk: Winnipeg, Manitoba, in the National Homeland of the Red River Métis – In recent years, the Canadian public has become increasingly aware of the problem of Indigenous identity theft. At the individual level, this occurs when individuals falsely claim Indigenous identity to advance their careers and benefits. Indigenous identity theft can also occur at...

September 30, 2023


Pierre Poilievre called out for tweet caption on Truth and Reconciliation Day photos with Inuk elder

The Globe and Mail: The Canadian Press. Ottawa – Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre found himself the subject of online criticism after posting photos with an Inuk elder alongside a caption about meeting with Algonquin elders on the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation. Poilievre posted two photos to X, formerly known as Twitter, on Saturday...

September 21, 2023


Toronto twins and mother charged with fraud

Karima Manji, Amira Gill and Nadya Gill have been charged with two counts each of fraud. Amira and Nadya Gill. Photo: CTV News  APTN News: Iqaluit RCMP has announced that Karima Manji, Amira Gill and Nadya Gill have been charged with two counts each of fraud over $5,000. According to an RCMP news release, an...

August 16, 2023


Toronto school board should vet claims of staff who self-identify as Indigenous, say former student, parent

Toronto District School Board says it’s creating a procedure informed by Indigenous communities ·  CBC News: A former student and parent of Kâpapâmahchakwêw – Wandering Spirit School in Toronto are calling on Canada’s largest school board to create a policy that vets applicants who claim to be Indigenous when they’re applying for positions at Indigenous-focused schools...

August 10, 2023


‘Pretendian’ conference delves into how to deal with false claims of Indigenous identity

APTN News: More than 30 people attended a conference in Tsuut’ina, just outside of Calgary, to talk about the issues of people falsely claiming Indigenous identity. They have come to colloquially be called “Pretendians. ”Participants came from as far as Halifax to hear about how to deal with increasing false claims of Indigenous identity.“ You...

August 1, 2023


Manitoba’s political parties not doing enough to verify Indigenous identity: Métis lawyer

Jean Teillet says vetting processes not detailed, or no verification exists for 3 main political parties CBC News: Manitoba’s political parties are not doing enough to make sure candidates’ claims to Indigeneity are legitimate, says Jean Teillet, a lawyer and great-grandniece of Métis leader Louis Riel. CBC News asked all three of Manitoba’s provincial parties with a seat...

July 31, 2023


Environment Minister Kevin Klein’s claim to be Métis denounced by brother, Manitoba Métis Federation

Premier Heather Stefanson said Klein is 1 of 2 Indigenous members of her caucus NationTalk: The Manitoba government’s website continues to identify Environment Minister Kevin Klein as Métis, even though the president of the Manitoba Métis Federation, a prominent Métis lawyer and Klein’s own brother all dispute the claim. “The basis for stating Mr. Klein...

July 11, 2023


Controversial twins asked to pay back Indspire for bursaries

 A national charity is seeking to recoup thousands from two Toronto twins APTN News: A national Indigenous charity that provided funding to two Toronto twins claiming to be Inuit for their university education says it wants its money back. Amira and Nadya Gill received funding from Indspire’s Building Brighter Futures program to support their education...

June 21, 2023


What fake Indigenous ‘Pretendians’ say about the endurance of colonialism

Novelist and essayist Michelle Good examines how what she calls ‘playing Indian’ allows settlers to “create us in their own image and to expect our collaboration in their effort to do so.” Book Excerpt Good is of Cree ancestry and is a member of the Red Pheasant Cree Nation in Saskatchewan. Her novel Five Little Indians...

April 7, 2023


Vianne Timmons removed as president of Memorial University

Board of regents made announcement Thursday afternoon in MUN’s Gazette CBC News: Memorial University of Newfoundland’s governing body has removed president and vice-chancellor Vianne Timmons from her position.  The move comes after Timmons announced on March 13 she was taking a voluntary, six-week paid leave of absence from the president’s office amid public scrutiny following a CBC News investigation into her...

March 13, 2023


MUN president Vianne Timmons apologizes, takes temporary leave, as Mi’kmaw claims scrutinized

Board of regents striking Indigenous roundtable to discuss issue  CBC News: Memorial University president Vianne Timmons is taking a voluntary, six-week paid leave of absence and is apologizing as the university gathers Indigenous leaders to discuss the issue of her statements of Mi’kmaw heritage. “While I have shared that I am not Mi’kmaw and I do not...

March 9, 2023


Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond speaks out after award revoked over heritage

The Globe and Mail – Canadian Press: Former judge Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond says she’s satisfied in her “past work, identity and self-worth,” after the British Columbia Civil Liberties Association revoked an award because its board members believed she falsified her claims of Indigenous identity. In her most expansive recent remarks since a CBC investigation last...

March 3, 2023


University of Saskatchewan launches website aimed at rooting out Indigenous identity fraud

Indigenous communities will determine what constitutes proof of Indigenous identity CBC News: The University of Saskatchewan has launched a website it hopes will help ensure that only genuine Indigenous people will benefit from jobs and funding set aside for them. The site is a portal, enabling First Nations, Métis, Inuit and international Indigenous peoples applying for Indigenous-specific...

March 1, 2023


Métis Nation of Ontario votes to boot members with incomplete files

Of 8,270 members who cast ballots, 5,898 voted in favour of removal CBC: The Métis Nation of Ontario has voted to boot 5,400 members whose files lack hard evidence of a Métis connection. The MNO announced the results of a province-wide plebiscite in a news release on Wednesday, saying a clear majority voted to remove members with...

February 27, 2023


Métis Nation of Ontario’s future at stake as members vote on fate of thousands

Nearly 1 in 4 members had no evidence of ties to Métis ancestor in 2021 report CBC News: The fate of thousands of Métis Nation of Ontario (MNO) members with no documented link to a Métis ancestor hangs in the balance as the organization votes this week in a province-wide plebiscite. The vote comes following years...

February 16, 2023


Senator says more awareness needed of ‘invisible crime’ of Indigenous identity theft

The Globe and Mail (Canadian Press) – Sen. Mary Jane McCallum says Indigenous identity fraud is a damaging but often unseen crime that inflicts serious harm on Indigenous women. The Cree woman from Manitoba is calling for a Senate committee to study the phenomenon and the damage it causes. “People don’t really look at identity...

January 18, 2023


UBC regrets its handling of Turpel-Lafond ancestry concerns

Gitxaała professor says UBC’s initial response left Indigenous people ‘feeling left out to dry’ CBC News: The University of British Columbia says it regrets its handling of the case of high-profile former professor Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond, who was the subject of a CBC investigation about her claims of Indigenous heritage. Turpel-Lafond was a professor at UBC and academic...

January 3, 2023


Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond no longer employed by UBC

University won’t say why she is gone CBC News: High-profile professor and former judge Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond is no longer employed at the University of British Columbia (UBC), according to an official with the institution.  The university says that as of Dec.16, Turpel-Lafond is no longer a professor in the Peter A. Allard School of Law.  When...

December 14, 2022


Rescind Turpel-Lafond’s honorary degrees or we’ll return ours, say high-profile Indigenous women

Academic integrity expert says Turpel-Lafond story is a ‘watershed moment for Canadian higher education’ CBC Investigates: Michelle Good chokes up a little when she talks about the honorary doctorate she received from Simon Fraser University (SFU) in October. The retired Cree lawyer and author of the bestselling book Five Little Indians received the honour for her advocacy...

November 3, 2022


Report offers guidance for post-secondary efforts on Indigenous citizenship/membership verification

Saskatchewan (USask) is sharing a new independent report that will contribute to the national conversation and inform the university’s continued implementation of policies and practices around this issue. NationTalk: USask commissioned Jean Teillet, a leading Canadian expert on Indigenous rights, Métis identity, and history, to look into the root causes of the problem, advise on the...

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