Universities tackle Indigeneity fraud during identity forum

Indigenous students, staff and faculty may be required to check a box on their university application forms giving universities in Canada permission to investigate asserted Indigeneity by speaking with their communities, writes Shari Narine for

“It’s adding layers of accountability,” said Dr Jacqueline Ottmann, president of the First Nations University of Canada and co-chair of the newly created National Indigenous University Senior Leaders’ Association (NIUSLA). “Self-identification isn’t working and the one reason that it hasn’t worked is because it goes against that relationality, that community connection that most Indigenous peoples are very familiar with,” she said.

Ottmann spoke to media via Zoom during the second day of the two-day virtual National Indigenous Identity Forum. The forum was closed to media. The 40 or so universities that comprise the NIUSLA invited Indigenous Elders, knowledge keepers, staff, students, scholars and academics to “develop tangible processes and wise practices that ensure Indigenous-specific university opportunities are rightfully given to those who are truly representative of Indigenous communities and experiences,” according to the news release announcing the forum.
Full report on the Toronto Star site