This website was part of a research project entitled Exploring Section 10: Narrating Three Decades of Indian Band Membership Policy, 1985 to Present. The project commenced in 2018 and wrapped up in 2022.
Exploring Section 10 focused on better understanding the impacts of First Nations band membership codes in Canada. In 1985, the Canadian government amended the Indian Act (under Bill C-31). This amendment allowed Indian bands to take control of their membership under the newly-established section 10 of the act. By 1987, more than 240 of Canada’s 600+ Indian bands opted to control their own membership by writing what are known as “section 10 membership codes.” However, while many saw this as a positive step towards self-government, some bands used section 10 to exclude individuals who otherwise might belong with their respective communities.
The project was led by Dr. Damien Lee (Toronto Metropolitan University) and Dr. Kahente Horn-Miller (Carleton University). Please review our project materials developed through this initiative.