According to a statement issued by the Correctional Investigator of Canada Howard Sapers on Thursday, “There are just over 3,400 aboriginal men and women making up 23 percent of the country’s federal prison inmate population.”
“In other words, while aboriginal people in Canada comprise just four percent of the population, in federal prisons nearly one in four is Métis, Inuit, or First Nations,” he added.
He went on to say that “the over-representation of aboriginal people in federal corrections and the lack of progress to improve the disparity in correctional outcomes continues to cloud Canada’s domestic human rights record.”
Meanwhile, Canada’s official opposition party, the New Democrats, issued a statement saying “What we find in this report is a shocking indictment of how… (Ottawa) has failed aboriginal Canadians.”
Also, former Supreme Court Justice Frank Lacobucci has revealed in a study that the aboriginal youths are treated more harshly by the justice system than other groups.
Lacobucci showed in a study that about one quarter of young native offenders were sent to jail for assault, in contrast to less than 15 percent of non-aboriginal youth.
He severely criticized the Canadian judicial system for “systemic racism” and stated that the jailing of aboriginals is a “serious crisis.”
In 2012, the United Nations called on Canada to take “urgent measures” to reduce the overrepresentation of aboriginals and blacks in the criminal justice system and out-of-home care.