Aboriginal Day means time for new ideas

Blog, Poverty, Joseph Quesnel

A new study from the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives shows that half of First Nations children grow up in poverty. This is triple the national average, according to the study.

In Manitoba, the Aboriginal poverty rate stands at over 60 per cent.

Tomorrow is Aboriginal Day, so it is time to reflect on new ideas and approaches.

A new study from the Fraser Institute provides some clues. The study suggests that private poverty rights may be the right policy solution to address income, employment and education on reserves.

“There have been a lot of studies that have shown across the world, frankly, that people in countries that have advanced property rights do well,” said Ravina Bains, associate director for the centre of aboriginal policy studies at the Fraser Institute.

So, this is not just a question of ethnic background or culture. All groups have benefited from property rights.

The Frontier Centre has advanced the idea of First Nations property rights for years.

Property rights are not a silver bullet and there is much to be said about infrastructure improvement, the economics of location, and governance reform. The Indian Act continues to act as an obstacle to effective First Nations economic development.

But, clearly, on this Aboriginal Day, it is time to hear about new directions. The status quo is not sustainable.