Canada Celebrates 50th Anniversary of First Nations' Right to Vote

All American Indians were made U.S. citizens by Congress in 1924. Ostensibly, all Indians of voting age could then vote in federal elections and should have also been allowed to vote in state elections.

I am unfamiliar with the specific history of Indians voting in federal elections after 1924 and whether they were allowed to exercise that right.

I do know that it took states a long time to recognize the right of Indians to vote in state elections. It took state supreme court decisions in Arizona in 1948 and in New Mexico in 1962, for example, before those states recognized Indians as state citizens who had the right to vote in state elections. Maine didn’t allow Indians to vote until 1967!

Canada is celebrating the 50th anniversary of allowing its Indigenous peoples to vote.

Chuck Strahl, Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development and Federal Interlocutor for Métis and Non-Status Indians, marked that anniversary today.

“This is an important milestone and a cause for reflection,” said Minister Strahl. “It was under the Diefenbaker government that the Canada Elections Act was amended to extend the right to vote to First Nations individuals back in 1960, and today, this government is moving forward to protect the rights of Aboriginal people.”

The right to vote was extended to First Nations people when the Act to Amend the Canada Elections Act (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canada_Elections_Act) passed into law. This amendment removed discriminatory parts of Section 14 of the Act and received Royal Assent on March 31, 1960. It came into effect on July 1 of that year.

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0 Responses to Canada Celebrates 50th Anniversary of First Nations' Right to Vote

  1. Thanks for sharing such useful and important information.After reading this post i am intrigued about the reasons for which it took Indians such a long time to exercise their power to vote.Happy to read about Canada.It was a step in the right direction as far as their history is concerned.Look forward to getting more such news from you soon.

  2. toplum says:

    Hi there, I found your blog via Google while searching and your post looks very interesting for me

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