Statement of the Government of Canada on Indian Policy, 1969

The 1969 White paper that proposed abolishing the Indian Act and integrating aboriginals into mainstream Canadian society

To be an Indian is to be a man, with all a man’s needs and abilities. To be an Indian is also to be different. It is to speak different languages, draw different pictures, tell different tales and to rely on a set of values developed in a different world.

Canada is richer for its Indian component, although there have been times when diversity seemed of little value to many Canadians.

But to be a Canadian Indian today is to be someone different in another way. It is to be someone apart – apart in law, apart in the provision of government services and, too often apart in social contacts.

To be an Indian is to lack power – the power to act as owner of your lands, the power to spend your own money and, too often, the power to change your own condition.

 

Read the original white paper . . .

R32-2469-eng

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