This website will change as a result of the dissolution of Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada, and the creation of Indigenous Services Canada and the eventual creation of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada. During this transformation, you may also wish to consult the updated Indigenous and Northern Affairs home page.
‘Indigenous peoples' is a collective name for the original peoples of North America and their descendants. Often, ‘Aboriginal peoples' is also used.
The Canadian Constitution recognizes three groups of Aboriginal peoples: Indians (more commonly referred to as First Nations), Inuit and Métis. These are three distinct peoples with unique histories, languages, cultural practices and spiritual beliefs.
More than 1.67 million people in Canada identify themselves as an Aboriginal person, according to the 2016 Census. Aboriginal peoples are:
the fastest growing population in Canada – grew by 42.5% between 2006 and 2016
the youngest population in Canada – about 44% were under the age of 25 in 2016