Indian Act Amendment

1. The amendment to the Indian act allowed the government to declare any poorly-equipped institution an industrial or boarding school for Aboriginal peoples. It also allowed the government to claim Aboriginal lands for the creation of a residential school. 2. The Superintendent-General was given the power to appoint an executor of the estate of a deceased Aboriginal person. 3. The Superintendent was given supreme authority over sanitation, including the cleaning of public spaces and homes, and supplying necessary medicine.


PAC, RG10, Vol. 6809, file 470-2-3, vol. 6: Scott to Roche, 30 January 1914 with draft bill and brief, p. 6-9.

These amendments represent a trend in amendments to the Indian Act in which bureaucratic surveillance and control of Indigenous affairs increased over time. No accountability structures or system of checks and balances were simultaneously applied to compensate for the powers afforded these expansions of bureaucratic oversight. This is indicative of the belief that it was Indigenous peoples who posed a threat to societal order, and from whom settler society needed to be protected, obscuring the abuses of state-imbued power and vulnerability to harm from unelected Indian Agents or other colonial officials. There does not appear to have been discussions of rights that applied to First Nations people or potential routes of advocacy in cases of corruption, such as unjust accusations of criminality. For more information, please see related entries on Indian Act amendments.
Rural or Urban
Start Date
Sub Event
Increased Power over Creation of Residential Schools, Superintendent-General Power over Deceased Person's Estate, Public Sanitation
File Description
An Act to Amend the Indian Act: 4-5 George V, Chapt. 35, 12th Parliament, 3rd Session