‘Apartheid Kills’

“I believe and see evidence that the great fundamental problem lies with the ‘apartheid’ system into which Aboriginals have been thrust for 150 years or more,” Lefrançois wrote in his report. “It is time to put an end to this apartheid system, and for all of the authorities concerned to confront that challenge.” 

“A Quebec coroner’s report on five suicides in two Innu communities in the province said a system similar to apartheid is at the root of the problems that led to the people’s deaths.

“Despite all the money and efforts of the various levels of government over the past few decades, despite the treaties and agreements signed and the many discussions and negotiations, little is changing. To expect an improvement, you have to address the problems and consider solutions differently”, wrote Lefrancois… 

“The 50-page report, released Saturday by Bernard Lefrancois, examined the deaths of three women and one man in Uashat Mak Mani-Utenam and a woman from Kawawachikamach – both communities are on Quebec’s North Shore.

“Lefrancois said the problems in these communities are largely rooted in the reserve system.

“Lefrancois’ report said the five people had different stories but were all ‘indigenous’, and all suffered individually against a backdrop of ‘collective unhappiness’.

“The victims…all took their lives between February and October of 2015. 


Lefrancois wrote,

“this raises the question of the living conditions in these communities and the lack of means to overcome the difficulties generally associated with suicide, all noted in relation to one or the other of the five deaths.”

“The report said the five victims — four Innu and one Naskapi — all exhibited at least one of the factors associated with suicide including:

Presence of mental disorders;
Abuse and dependence on alcohol and drugs or other addictions;
Previous ideation or attempted suicide;
Conjugal difficulties or breakdown of the family;
Exposure to the suicide of a relative;
Violent, aggressive or impulsive behavior;
Economic difficulties, loss of employment;
Problems with justice;
Abuse and neglect, dysfunctional family;
Social problems, rejection, intimidation.

“Lefrancois’ report calls for improving the living conditions in Aboriginal communities, which have a suicide rate that is double that of the general population, and changing the way solutions are found…”

–‘Quebec Coroner compares First Nation reserve system to apartheid in report on suicides’,
APTN (with files from the Canadian Press) , January 14, 2017

Feature PHOTO: Phil Carpenter – Montreal Gazette


Uashat-Maliotenam, an Innu reserve near Sept-Îles, Que. (PHOTO: Radio-Canada)
Uashat-Maliotenam, an Innu reserve near Sept-Îles, Que. (PHOTO: Radio-Canada)

“I believe and see evidence that the great fundamental problem lies with the ‘apartheid’ system into which Aboriginals have been thrust for 150 years or more,” the report reads.


“The Indian Act is an ancient and outdated law that establishes two kinds of citizens, Aboriginals and non-Aboriginals. The Aboriginal is a ward of the State, someone considered incapable and unfit.”

“Lefrançois’ report also blamed the series of suicides on a lack of mental health resources available to the community of 4,000 people.

“The local suicide prevention centre only provides services in French, which is not widely spoken in Uashat-Maliotenam, Lefrançois noted. It does not provide services in Innu or Naskapi… The Naskapi have to travel to Montreal, 900 kilometres away, to receive treatment for alcohol or drug issues in either Naskapi or English…
{All of these Canadian citizens should be able to speak either English or French!}

“We knew before what was the problem, but today, Canadians and Quebecers know a little bit more about the situation and what is going on inside the community,” said Jean-Claude Therrien Pinnet, a political adviser to the band council in Uashat-Maliotenam.


“Pinnet added that Lefrançois was right to use the charged term ‘apartheid’ — invoking the system of racial discrimination that existed in South Africa between 1948 and 1991 — to describe Canada’s reserve system.

“We are naming the things that should be named,” Pinnet said.


“I think that with the kind of situation that we are living and passing through, we should use the good words, and I think that is the best word I saw in the report today.”

“The report contains more than 40 recommendations, directed at all levels of government.
{NONE of which include the ending of Apartheid and Race Based Law:
http://endracebasedlaw.net/petition/ }

–‘Apartheid system’ of reserves to blame for Innu suicides: Quebec coroner’,
Jonathan Montpetit, Marika Wheeler, CBC News, Jan, 14, 2017


Uashat, with the town of Sept-Îles in the top third of the photo. Maliotenam is in the distance at the top of the photo PHOTO: (Phil Carpenter- Montreal Gazette)
Uashat, with the town of Sept-Îles in the top third of the photo. Maliotenam is in the distance at the top of the photo PHOTO: (Phil Carpenter- Montreal Gazette)

“Lefrancois noted the Innu community of Uashat mak Mani-Utenam suffers from social problems that include high rates of unemployment, substance abuse and suicide. The troubles are despite numerous community resources including its own police force, social services, three Innu schools, and health service points.

“He places the blame for the struggles of aboriginal communities squarely on the reserve system, and describes the Indian Act as “an ancient and outdated law” that treats aboriginal people as wards of the state who are “considered incapable and unfit.”

“Lefrancois said the residential schools, which were a source of multi-generational trauma, were

“only one product, one beast among many others, of the apartheid system that was introduced by our ancestors and that has been preserved to our day.”

“He said he hoped the report would prompt Canadians to question whether the current system still has its place in 2017…”

–‘Suicides in Quebec indigenous communities were avoidable: coroner’,
Vicky Fragasso-Marquis, Canadian Press, Jan. 14, 2017



See also:
Moving is the only hope’ (Remote Reserves) {June 23, 2016}:

Where Has All The Money Gone?‘ (Onion Lake/Charmaine Stick) {November 16, 2016}:

Another Failing Remote Reserve’ (Shamattawa) {September 28, 2016}:

Where’s The Money?’ (Liard/Yukon) {August 8, 2016}:

Another Tribal Crisis’ (Stoney ‘First Nations’) {July 26, 2016}:

Most Jobs Are Off Reserve’ (Saskatchewan) {May 17, 2016}: https://endracebasedlawcanadanews.wordpress.com/2016/05/17/most-jobs-are-off-reserve/

Playing Political Games With Children’s Lives’ (Attawapiskat) {May 6, 2016}:

Money isn’t Attawapiskat’s problem’ (Reserve Dysfunction) {April 23, 2016}: https://endracebasedlawcanadanews.wordpress.com/2016/04/23/money-isnt-attawapiskats-problem/
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Mail to: endracebasedlawpetition@gmail.com

1 Comment

  1. “To expect an improvement, you have to address the problems and consider solutions differently”, wrote Lefrancois… ”
    Actually the Aboriginals/Indigenous NEED to address and find solutions while taking responsibility for their own situations and dependency on having others(mainly government) take care of and “fix” every little problem!! It is high time they got out of the sandbox, quit playing the blame and racist game and grow the heck up!!!


Thank you from ERBL inc. Canada

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