As time went by, there were more people in need of jobs, therefore, not a lot of Aboriginal people had job. The Aboriginal people became poor and are the poorest people in Canada. First Nations people needed to get away from their problems and this was the easiest solution that they found. Many of these problem lead to suicidal attempts. According to the 2014 BC Mental Health and Addictions Journal, it shows the highest rates of suicidal attempts were made by the Inuit, the first Nation’s People were second on the list and the Canadians over all were at the bottom of the list. The report also shows that females are more likely to have a suicidal attempt the males, and how rates of completed suicides are higher amongst male. “Depression is a common and life-changing mental illness in the Canadian population. This is especially true for First Nations people, who experience major depression at twice the national average.” This is more common in adults who live on reserves or have lived on reserves in the past. Surveys also show “Around 75% of all residents feel alcohol use is a problem in their community, 33% indicate that it’s a problem in their own family or household and 25% say that they have a personal problem with alcohol.”
Canada as a nation is known to the world for being loving, courteous, and typically very welcoming of all ethnicities. Nevertheless, the treatment of Canada’s Indigenous population over the past decades, appears to suggest otherwise. Indigenous people have been tormented and oppressed by the Canadian society for hundreds of years and remain to live under discrimination resulting in cultural brutality. This, and more, has caused severe negative cultural consequences, psychological and sociological effects. The history of the seclusion of Indigenous people has played a prominent aspect in the development and impact of how Indigenous people are treated and perceived in today’s society. Unfortunately, our history with respect to the treatment of Indigenous communities is not something in which we should take pride in. The Indian Act of 1876 is an excellent model of how the behavior of racial and cultural superiority attributed to the destruction of Indigenous culture and beliefs. The Indian Act established by the Canadian government is a policy of Aboriginal assimilation which compels Indigenous parents under threat of prosecution to integrate their children into Residential Schools. As a nation, we are reminded by past actions that has prompted the weakening of the identity of Indigenous peoples. Residential schools has also contributed to the annihilation of Indigenous culture which was to kill the Indian in the child by isolating them from the influence of their parents and
After days, months, years of being physically and sexually abused, shamed, bullied, breaking ties with their families and having their identity stripped because they were “different”; let anxiety and depression start to get ahold of them. “Separated from their parents, they grew up knowing neither respect nor affection. A school system that mocked and suppressed their families’ cultures and traditions, destroyed their sense of self-worth.”(TRC Introduction). This introduces the idea of depression and anxiety beginning to unfold as words can not explain the pain and hurting they went through. “Children who had been bullied and abused, carried a burden of shame and anger for the rest of their lives. Overwhelmed by this legacy, many succumbed to despair and depression. Countless lives were lost to alcohol and drugs.”(TRC Introduction). There is no doubt that the Canadian government was racist towards the First Nation Peoples. The racism lead to the school system and the Survivors depression and anxiety. “The residential school environment was deeply racist. It presumed the intellectual inferiority of the children and it demeaned Aboriginal culture, language and parenting. The students were treated as if they were prisoners who required strict discipline simply because they were Aboriginal.”(TRC 227). Racism and the feeling of anger
Concerns of violent victimization and self-destructive tendencies in Aboriginal communities have become a significant issue in Aboriginal movements worldwide. In Canada, it has taken the specific form of feminist-inspired campaigns for only those Indigenous females that are missing and murdered. The highly vocalized 2015 campaign for the 42nd Canadian Federal Election drew much attention to the fate of missing and murdered Indigenous women. However, the attention on females suggests that the inherent implication that Indigenous men’s attitudes toward Indigenous women are the problem and that the men are not victims of violence themselves. This essay will first acknowledge the chronic problem of violence in the place of Indigenous peoples in first world societies and the continuing social problems that marginalize their position. This paper will then examine the Aboriginal peoples of Canada, the violence in their communities, and whether or not Indigenous men and their masculinities have an appropriate place in the national picture regarding the missing and murdered Indigenous women. I will conclude with a consideration of the extent to which if men do have an appropriate place in the inquiry and which policy recommendations are required to address the issues that Aboriginal people confront.
The social issue that I would like to address as a social worker is the epidemic of indigenous youth suicide in Canada. On the macro level, I believe this issue can be understood through two fundamental components: the residual effects of colonization trauma passed through generations and the effects of current colonial-based, neo-liberal institutional actions on indigenous youth.
On October 15th 2013 the United Nations special rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples, James Anaya, released a statement upon the conclusion of his visit to Canada. In his statement, Anaya reveals that “from all I have learned, I can only conclude that Canada faces a crisis when it comes to the situation of indigenous peoples of the country” (2013:8). Even though Canada was one of the first countries to extend constitutional protection to the rights of indigenous people, Canadian aboriginals experience a well-being gap. Aboriginal teens are more likely to commit suicide; Aboriginal women are
The remaining memory of residential schools is not yet forgotten. The abuse had caused trauma that lasted a lifetime. When children returned home they would have forgotten their traditions and language. This tragedy had led First Nations to experience depression, Drugs, Alcohol abuse and low education, Not only that, but low self-esteem and crime.
Throughout Canada’s 150 years of being a country, Indigenous people were oppressed. The children were forced into residential schools, and eventually, over decades, the entire culture was lost. Looking back on it now, it is clear that what had happened was a “cultural genocide.” Cultural genocide is defined as, “the destruction of structures and practices that allow a group to continue as a group” (Moffit, Brown, 2017).
Indigenous women are the most at risk group in Canada. Indigenous people make up four percent of Canadas population however, they are seven times more likely to be murdered (Emmanuelle Walter, 2015 p. 87). This is directly linked to Canada’s dark past. Indigenous people were the only ones occupying Canada until the 1600’s. During this time the Europeans came to Canada to extract resources, but soon after they realized Canada was a beautiful country they would like to live in. This resulted in the colonization of Indigenous people through the fur trade, treaties, Residential School and the Indian Act. Through these acts Europeans were able to modernize, which has contributed to health, education and safety problems for Indigenous women.
This theory predicts that there are two components to suicide. First off, perception of burdening others and feeling socially alienated combine to result in the desire to die. However, an individual will not act on this desire unless he/she has developed a capability to do so. Capability to commit suicide is developed through habituation from overexposure which perhaps desensitizes the individual to experiences that are painful. This may be vital in allowing the individual to overcome innate instincts for survival and prepare him/her to act on the desire to die. Aboriginal people in Canada have undergone tremendous acculturation and marginalization (failing to acquire and value Aboriginal values and identity, while also failing to identify with the cultural values of the larger society) which may be responsible in making them perceive themselves as a burden to others and feel socially alienated. Such feelings, based on the interpersonal-psychological theory, might instil the desire to die. Habituation and as a result, desensitization to the fear and pain associated with a suicidal experience, could be occurring due to high rates of suicide in one’s community. Thus, the interpersonal-psychological theory provides some insight into aboriginal suicide. However, the picture is incomplete as this explanation could be applied to suicide amongst patients
Each individual makes up the society as it is, and various characteristics and beliefs makes up an individual. Although, individual lives together with a variety of personal ideologies, emotions, cultures, and rituals, they all differentiate one person from the other making up one’s own identity. This identity makes up who one is inside and out, their behaviour, actions, and words comes from their own practices and values. However, the profound history of Indigenous people raises question in the present about their identities. Who are they really? Do we as the non-native people judge them from the outside or the inside? Regardless of whether the society or the government were involved in their lives, they faced discrimination in every
Since December of 2015, there has been an alarming rate of suicides to occur in Manitoba, Canada on the Cross Lake First Nation Indian Reserve. Since then six students have committed suicide while ten others have attempted it. Most of the people who have attempted suicide are ninth and tenth graders of that school and are currently on a suicide prevention list. The chief of the small community of only six thousand eight hundred individuals is calling a state of emergency. Shirley Robinson who is the chief told CNN, “There's so much hurt, there's so much pain. You can feel it in every direction of our nation. Only last year there was one suicide while in some of the recent past years there had been no suicides. The community said it is difficult
Racism and forceful cultural identity misshapes the life of many aboriginals as early childhood encounters psychologically leave scars, this is demonstrated in the novel In Search of April Raintree by Beatrice Culleton Mosionier. Due to the fact that as Native Canadians are deprived of basic human rights from the very beginning of their lives, they may commit wrongful actions as they believe they have a valid reason to do so. Hence, aboriginals may choose not to classify themselves, further risking distancing themselves from loved ones that do.
Aboriginal peoples of Canada have suffered exponentially throughout the entirety of history and proceed to do so in modern society. Much of the continued suffrage of aboriginal peoples is as a result of the Sixties Scoop and the Residential School System, as well as the lack of resources available to them. This has wreaked extensive havoc on the mental health of Aboriginal peoples, and has left excessive amounts of stigma and racism attached to Aboriginal Peoples, explicitly seen in the cases of missing and murdered Indigenous women.
In April 1995 Pamela George, an Ojibway women, was brutally murdered in Saskatchewan. Her murderers Steven Kummerfield and Alex Ternowetsky, young middle-class white men, were convicted of manslaughter and sentenced to merely six and a half years in prison. George’s story is one of the many Indigenous women who have been murdered or missing over the past years. There are over 580 cases of missing and murdered Indigenous women, close to half are put aside and left unsolved. Only 53% of these cases have lead to charges of homicide (Klement 8). Drastically, statistics indicate that Aboriginals are faced with more hardships throughout their life compared to the average Canadian. Indigenous groups, particularly women, suffer from a lower rate of education, higher suicide rates and an array of health risks. This paper will examine the role settler colonization history has played in perpetuating conditions for violence to indigenous women, many of which are still experienced today. This will be accomplished by first assessing the history of settler colonization and its negative repercussions. Secondly, it will use Sherene Razak’s concept of “spatial segregation,” to illustrate how state institutions have facilitated violence through space, race and the law. Lastly, this paper will use evidence from the film “Finding Dawn” to further demonstrate how violence towards indigenous women is institutionally produced.