Ontario Region

Welcome to Ontario Region. In this section you'll find news and information specific to Ontario, as well as links to national information and programs of interest to First Nation, Métis, and Inuit communities. The largest number of people with Aboriginal ancestry in Canada live in Ontario (242,495 of the over 1,172,785) [Note 1]. Almost half of the 181,524 Registered Indian population in Ontario lives on 207 reserves and settlements, and there are 126 bands [Note 2], with over 23,000 speakers of Aboriginal languages [Note 3]. These communities are located across the province, from near Windsor in the south to the shores of Hudson Bay in the north (see map showing the locations of Ontario's First Nations). Five of the twenty largest bands in Canada are located in Ontario. One in four Ontario First Nations is a small, remote community, accessible only by air year round, or by ice road in the winter. Ontario has more remote First Nations than any other region in Canada [Note 4]. Major urban Aboriginal populations are in Thunder Bay, Sudbury, Sault Ste. Marie, Ottawa, and Toronto.

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  1. The information source for this data is: Statistics Canada. 2006. Aboriginal identity population by age groups, median age and sex, 2006 counts for both sexes, for Canada, provinces and territories - 20% sample data. October 2010. Statistics Canada  (accessed May 31, 2011). Census: Aboriginal Peoples in Canada in 2006: Inuit, Métis and First Nations, 2006 Census: First Nations people. January 5, 2010.  (web page accessed May 31, 2011). Definitions: Aboriginal ancestry refers to the ethnic or cultural origin of a person's ancestors, an ancestor being usually more distant than a grandparent. In the census, if a person reports at least one Aboriginal ancestry response, the person is counted in the Aboriginal ancestry population. Source: Statistics Canada  (web page accessed May 31, 2011). Aboriginal identity refers to those persons who reported identifying with at least one Aboriginal group, that is, North American Indian, Métis or Inuit, and/or those who reported being a Treaty Indian or a Registered Indian, as defined by the Indian Act of Canada, and/or those who reported they were members of an Indian band or First Nation. The Aboriginal identity population was counted the same way in 2006, 2001 and 1996, providing comparable data for three census years. However, comparison of Aboriginal data across census years must adjust for incompletely enumerated reserves and settlements. Some Indian reserves and settlements did not participate in the census as enumeration was not permitted, or it was interrupted before completion. In 2006, there were 22 incompletely enumerated Indian reserves, compared to 30 in 2001 and 77 in 1996. Source: Statistics Canada (web page accessed May 31, 2011). More information on these and other census concepts can be found at the Census of Canada. (return to source paragraph)
  2. The information source for this data is Registered Indian Population, by Type of Residence, Age Groups and Sex. December 31, 2010.(accessed May 31, 2011). Definitions: Registered Indian population refers to individuals whose names appear on the Indian Register. Names are added or deleted from the Indian Register based on legal sources of information such as provincial birth or death certificates. The addition or removal of a name to or from any part of the Indian Register is approved by the Registrar as set out in the Indian Act. (return to source paragraph)
  3. The information source for this data is Statistics Canada. 2006. Selected Language Characteristics (165), Aboriginal Identity (8), Age Groups (7), Sex (3) and Area of Residence (6) for the Population of Canada, Provinces and Territories, 2006 Census - 20% Sample Data. Statistics Canada (accessed May 31, 2011). Due to incomplete enumeration of reserves, caution should be exercised when using data for the Iroquoian languages. (return to source paragraph)
  4. The information source for this data is the First Nation Profiles. The profiles include general information on a First Nation along with more detailed information about its reserve(s), governance, federal funding, geography, registered population statistics and various Census statistics. (return to source paragraph)