Aboriginal Suicide In Colonialism

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Suicide is an increasingly pressing issue in Aboriginal communities in Canada. Along with self-harm, they a are the leading causes of death for Aboriginal people up to 44 years of age (Source, 9999). From 1999 to 2003, the suicide rate in Inuit regions across Canada averaged 135/100,000, over 10 times the national rate (Government of Canada, 2006). According to a 2008-2010 survey, 22% of First Nations adults report suicide ideation at some point in their lifetime compared to 9% of adults in the general population (First Nations Information Governance Centre, 2010). On the other hand, colonialism has had an important impact on the history of Aboriginal people in Canada by influencing their access to land, their cultural practices and their social …show more content…
In the same way as many of the laws regulating Aboriginal life did, the creation of the “Indian” status came from the Canadian Indian Act of 1876. This identification measure acted as an external descriptor that had been meaningless to Aboriginal people before colonization. This status was only attributed to those who could prove that they were related, through the male line, to people who already had a “Indian” status. Without it, Native individuals could not live on any of the Canadian reserves. By 1985, the legislation from the Indian Act caused two-thirds of all Native people in Canada to be landless and unable to take part in their own community (Holmes, 1987). Critical/Anti-Racist theory highlights how race is affected by social constructions and defines an individual’s access to social groups, political influence, and material resources, which ultimately results in distinctive health outcomes (Berry, 2016a). The reduction of the Aboriginal community to the raced identity of “Indian” reflects this scheme since race was the foundation of social exclusion and systematic racism resulting in psychological health inequalities between the Aboriginal community and the general population. (Lawrence,

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