Article Title

Estimating Institutionalization and Homelessness for Status First Nations in Canada: A Method and Implications


We propose an accessible and repeatable method for calculating rates of institutionalization and homelessness by age and gender among Status First Nations in Canada. We calculate this measure by combining Census and administrative data—a method that could be estimated fairly easily over time. We estimate extremely high rates of institutionalization and homelessness, especially among young Status men. We estimate that, averaged over 2001 and 2006, 12% of the Status male population was either institutionalized or homeless. We show that this high rate of institutionalization and homelessness results in a distortion in the male–female gender ratio, which may have long-run implications for the continued legal existence of Status First Nations in Canada.


We would like to thank Siwan Anderson, Pascal Courty, David Green, Robert L. A. Hancock, Anke Kessler, Eric McGregor, Kevin Milligan, David Scoones, Manisha Shah, Erin O'Sullivan, Steven Stillman, Jacqueline Quinless, and all those who commented on this work along the way. We would also like to thank Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada for the access they granted to the data and Statistics Canada's Research Data Centres staff. Any errors or omissions are ours alone.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

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