CHILD POVERTY IN FIRST NATIONS

Indigenous children make up 6.2% of all children in the country while indigenous people account for only 4.9-1877% of the total population. There is much at stake in offsetting poverty among first nations’ children.

Almost two-thirds of indigenous children in both Manitoba and Saskatchewan live in poverty: 62% in Manitoba and 64% in Saskatchewan.In the 2006 census, child poverty rates among aboriginal children was 40%. At that time, the national rate of child poverty was 17%, driven significantly higher by the rate among our indigenous population.

In spite of Canada’s vast economic wealth, child poverty among its indigenous peoples is such a big problem that it drives Canada’s ranking into the top 25 in  child poverty among the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development. The breakdown offered by policyalternatives.ca is even more stark and informative. According to this group, there are three tiers of child poverty in Canada. The first tier, the smallest, consists of families in the mainstream Canadian population; these kids – who are not Indigenous, racially visible or immigrants – make up 12% of Canada’s below-the-poverty-line children. Among racialized and first generation children the rate is 22%.

Thus, in actual reality, the child poverty rate among status First Nations children was 50% (120,000 out of 219,000 children). This rate is worse than that of Mexico, among many other countries.

Empowering aboriginal youth by easing or eliminating poverty
All of Canada stands to gain from the development of economic and educational advantages among its native population. “Eliminating [aboriginal childhood poverty] is a key aspect to “unlocking the potential” of aboriginal youth, our aboriginal peoples and the country in general. That enables economic growth and empowers them to better self-government and better overall conditions.

Help us fight child poverty among indigenous people now
True North Aid dealS with the immediate problem of providing aid to indigenous youth now, because cupboards and stomachs are empty right now

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