Aboriginal Women are Oppressed in Society Essay

1443 Words6 Pages
Throughout history, women have been the victims of oppression in society. In specific, Aboriginal women have suffered through racism, sexism, domestic violence, and over-representation. Through the implementation of the Indian Act, Aboriginal women have been forced to abandon their culture in order to assimilate into Canadian society. The effects of colonization has changed the way Aboriginal women are treated; emotionally and physically, and therefore are the source of oppression today. The Indian Act was created under the provisions section 91 of the Constitution Act of 1867 (Moss, 1990). The act was implemented to define who an “Indian” is and the rights that come with the title. These rights pertain to status, bands and reserves for…show more content…
Treaty benefits, health, rights to living on the reserve and property are forfeited as a result of losing Indian status. This also happens when an Indian women gets married to another Indian man. She loses her rights to her own band, and has to become a member of her husband’s band. Ultimately, if the women becomes widowed or abandoned then she loses all status of being an Indian all together. On the other hand, men can marry a non-status woman and all of his rights would be kept. With strides of equality throughout history, it takes a step back when Aboriginal women are entirely dependent of their husband. Several cases were took to court in the 1970’s, but not until 1980 is when there was a connection found between the United Nations Human Rights Committee and the Canadian Human Rights Act. With this section in direct violation of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, the removal of a woman’s Indian status while marrying a non-Indian man was done and Bill C-31 was passed so victims of the Indian Act can be reimbursed. However, Bill C-31 is still under scrutiny because those who have their status reinstated to them can only pass it on for one generation. This is a violation under Section 15 of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms (Payne, 1992). The Indian Act is a controversial piece of legislation that was passed in 1876. It has been amended throughout the times, but the core concept of the Indian Act still
Open Document