This article, written by ƝɨѕhҠѡe , was first published on West Coast Native News on Wednesday, 23 January 2013. Permission to republish this article was made to West Coast Native News and ƝɨѕhҠѡe prior to republication.
First Nations pay for ALL their own programs and services from the money “Held In Trust” by Canada. It is NOT TAXPAYER MONEY!!! Those programs and services are NOT FREE, they are contracted as a PURCHASE OF SERVICE.
TAXES pay for Canadian programs and services. First Nations don’t pay the taxes that provide programs and services to other Canadians. If a First Nations member lives or works off the First Nation they are taxed in the same manner as every other Canadian. None of those taxes benefit the First Nations communities even if the worker lives on a First Nation.
Since First Nations don’t pay for Non-Native programs and services, if their students attend “public schools” they have to pay “tuition”. First Nations pay for all education out of their allocated budgets and at a higher cost than other Canadians.
Here is an example: My reserve has no secondary school. Tuition to the public secondary school is “more than” $8,000/student, plus other fees and transportation.
If 20 grade 8 graduates attend the high school
20 students X $8,000 = $160,000/year
If each year we have 4 grades of 20 students
4X $160,000 = $640,000 (tuition for 1 year, plus fees and transportation)
For any special need student the tuition is 3 times the student tuition. This example is a conservative estimate of what my reserve pays each year “just for secondary school tuition”.
YOU are the one who is being subsidized. Your individual taxes don’t even cover the costs of the programs and services available to you.
Health Care for First Nations is paid out of their “Trust Funds” as a provincial TRANSFER PAYMENT whether they have access to health care or not. In fact, First Nations DO NOT have (as you say) the same ability to use the exact same health care as everyone else. That’s what the Chiefs are fighting for “the same” health care as every other Canadian resident.
First Nations are sovereign Nations. Canada declared First Nations citizens in the 1960s. First Nations did not ask to become citizens. Citizenship was imposed on them. The laws were changed to make it legal for First Nation members to leave the reserves and they were made citizens, so those that left the reserves could be taxed.
It’s the governments who decide how much of THEIR OWN money First Nations/Native Americans can have. The Chiefs have to fight to access their own money. It’s amazing how you can look at how YOU live and at how many First Nations/Native Americans are forced to live and think they have “special privileges”.
Indian Moneys Program
Indian Moneys means all moneys collected, received or held by Her Majesty for the use and benefit of Indians and/or bands. There are two types of Indian moneys: capital and revenue.
The Indian Moneys program is responsible for the administration of Indian moneys held within the CRF for the use and benefit of Indians and/or bands.
In some cases, Indian and Northern Affairs Canada (INAC) has specific responsibilities for managing moneys that belong to First Nations bands. These moneys are generated through band-owned resources such as oil and gas.
SUGGESTED ADDITIONAL READING
About That FN Trust by Elyse Bruce
Show Me The Money by Elyse Bruce
What This White Man Thinks Indians Deserve by Thomas D. Taylor
Who’s On The Hook For FN Programs by Elyse Bruce