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2016 - Daniels Decision confirms that Métis and non-status Indians are ‘Indians’ under s. 91(24) of the Constitution

December 9, 2017

The Daniels case is about the scope of the Federal government’s jurisdiction over indigenous people.  This jurisdiction is laid out in s. 91(24) of the Constitution Act, 1867 which says that Parliament has jurisdiction over “Indians and Lands reserved for the Indians”.  While we have known for some time that the group of people covered by this provision is broader than so-called “status” Indians (that is persons having status under the Indian Act) there is little clarity about who is encompassed by this definition. - JFK Law


This case does not affect who has “status” as a registered Indian under section 6 of the Indian Act. However, this case may prove useful in future court cases as Canada can no longer deny that it also has responsibility for Métis and non-status Indians and may be asked to justify why those groups are excluded from the benefits of status. - JFK Law

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