Fact Sheet  (Project Beyshick)

Information on Nishnawbe Aski Nation

  • The Nishnawbe Aski Nation is a political affiliation of all First Nations within their territory. More than 45 communities are represented by Nishnawbe Aski Nation.
  • Name is based on a principle which is sacred to our people: the notion of the people and the land, especially the unique relation between them.
  • Members of the Nishnawbe Aski Nation speak one of two distinctly separate languages: Cree or Ojibway.
  • The area of Nishnawbe Aski Nation runs from the Manitoba border to the Quebec border within the Hudson Bay’s and James Bay’s watersheds.
  • It occupies between one-half and two-thirds of the whole of Ontario, spanning a land mass 700 x 400 miles across the north of the province.
  • Estimated population of the more than 45 communities is 25,000

For more information, visit the Nishnawbe Aski Nation’s website at: www.nan.on.ca

General Facts

  • The median age of the Aboriginal population in Canada is 24.7 years compared with 37.7 years for all Canadians. (Source: Canadian Council on Social Development, 2001)
  • The median pre-tax income of Aboriginal persons in Canada is $13,526, compared with $22,120 for the entire population of Canada. (Source: Canadian Council on Social Development, 2003)
  • While Canada as a whole ranks near the top of the UN’s Human Development Index, Canada’s Aboriginal peoples would rank 78th on the same scale. (Source: “Same Country; Same Lands; 78 Countries Away” Cindy Blackstock)
  • Percentage of children who are poor among Aboriginal people – 52.1%
    Percentage of children who are poor among all Canadians – 15.5%
    (Source: Canadian Council on Social Development and UNICEF. Child Poverty in Rich Nations, June 2000)
  • The rate of suicide among Aboriginal youth in Canada 5 to 6 times higher than the rate among their non-aboriginal peers.  Youth deaths by suicide account for more than 15,000 years of potential life lost in Canada each year.
    (Source: Nishnawbe Aski Nation’s Decade for Youth & Development Office)
  • Aboriginal youth aged 15-25 are at the highest risk of suicide. Those living on a reserve are 6 times more likely to die by suicide than their non-native peers; those living within cities have a suicide rate equal to non-native youth.
    (Source: Nishnawbe Aski Nation’s Decade for Youth & Development Office)
  • Within Nishnawbe Aski Nation territory, over 68% of the population is under the age of 29.
    (Source: Nishnawbe Aski Nation’s Decade for Youth & Development Office)
  • The Nishnawbe Aski Nation lost over 240 youths to suicide since 1990.
    (Source: Nishnawbe Aski Nation’s Decade for Youth & Development Office)