From our archives: First Nations granted the right to vote

Photo courtesy of Library and Archives Canada

Photo courtesy of Library and Archives Canada


For many, it was a right that came much too late. It was on this day in 1960 that the people of Canada's First Nations were granted the right to vote in federal elections without having to give up their Indian status. Until that time, First Nations individuals could only vote if they forfeited their treaty rights and Indian status.

In 1959, CBC Radio broadcast a series entitled "The First Canadians." At that time, Morris Shumiatcher was the chair of an Indian Affairs Committee with the Canadian Bar Association. And in this episode of "The First Canadians," he lists the many political and economic restrictions laid upon First Nations because of their lack of full citizenship in Canada.

Click "Listen" to hear the audio.

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