Discrimination in the Rules of Indian Status and the McIvor Case
11 Pages Posted: 12 Jun 2009 Last revised: 11 Nov 2009
Date Written: August 19, 2009
The rules of Indian status have been the site of much contestation given the sexist and racist distinctions they embodied. A recent decision of the British Columbia Court of Appeal struck down certain aspects of the rules on the basis that they resulted in gender discrimination. However, the author argues that the decision wrongly assumed that ancestry requirements that amount to blood quantum requirements are unproblematic in terms of equality rights. To the contrary, the author suggests that the current Indian Act is based on a racial conception of indigenous identity that should fail equality review.
Keywords: Indian Act (Canada), indigenous identity, ethnicity, gender discrimination, racial discrimination, Indian status, blood quantum
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