The Indian Act of Canada
The Indian Act is the principal instrument through which federal jurisdiction over Indians and Native people has been exercised during the last one hundred years. It dictates the manner in which Indian reserves and treaties are administered by the Department of Indian Affairs and the limited control exercised by bands and band councils. The author gives a balanced and detailed study of the impact of this Act on Indian people. Topics discussed include: status and membership—entitlement to be registered as an Indian under the Act; the form and powers of self-government and the continuing conflict between traditional and municipal modes of self-government; the administration of the reserves and moneys arising therefrom as governed by the Act; the scope of the fiduciary obligation of the Crown with respect to Indian lands and resources; and the erosion of the treaties resulting from the narrow interpretation by the courts of treaty rights and the denial of treaty rights by the federal government.