ISAP

ISAP
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  • What? OK?
  • Sign on the dotted line. 
  • Bring your children for we are providing mandatory boarding school. If you do not hand over your children we will be forced to take them by force. 
  • Due to the language barrier the Indigenous leaders did not fully understand what they were signing. The colonizers also did not want them to fully understand the Act in order to have a greater control over the aspects of their life. 
  • One of the main goals was to assimilate the Indigenous peoples of Canada. They attempted to assimilate the Indigenous peoples of Canada by putting residential schools into place and making it illegal to practice religious ceremonies. Dancing however was still legal to practice, but Indian agents were instructed to us whatever means necessary to discourage dancing. 
  • The other main goals was to control the Indigenous peoples of Canada. They did this by allowing the government to have oppressive powers(with regards to identity, political structures, governance, cultural practices and education), replacing their traditional ways of government with band council elections and implementing the "Indian Status."
  • "The government of Canada sincerely apologizes and asks the forgiveness of the aboriginal peoples of this country for failing them so profoundly. We are sorry."
  • The use of the Indian Status was another attempt to control and assimilate the Indigenous peoples of Canada. One would lose their status if they went to university, became a christian minister or became a professional doctor or lawyer. It was essentially impossible for an Indigenous person to interact with a non-Indigenous society without losing their status.
  • People are still feeling the effects of the Indian Act today. Many face PTSD from their time spent at residential schools; resulting in high rates of alcoholism in Indigenous communities. There is also a significant loss of culture due to it being illegal to practice any form of religious ceremony for many decades. 
  • There has yet to be a formal apology towards the Indigenous people of Canada for the injustices of the Indian Act. However things seem to be looking up. Steven Harper has made an official apology for the residential schools and the act has been reformed as well as new bills that have been put into place in order to compensate for the Indian Act. 
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