June 11, 2009
The Third Annual Aboriginal Governance Index
This report ranks governance in 23 Manitoba First Nations, 29 Saskatchewan First Nations and 16 Alberta First Nations. The rankings are based on personal interviews and surveys.
In conducting the surveys, we attempted to include band members from all walks of life and to ensure that the sample was representative. We decided to avoid obtaining too many responses from band officials in any particular community and to engage band members not connected to band administration as much as possible.
The analysis of the Aboriginal Governance Index, based on data gathered from direct surveys of people living in First Nations, ranked these communities as having superior systems of governance and assigned these total weighted scores:• O’Chiese First Nation (AB) 73.2%
• Rolling River Nation (MB) 69.9%
• Siksika Nation (AB) 68.6%
• Beardy’s and Okemasis First Nation (SK) 67.8%
• Wesley First Nation (AB) 66.3%
• Mikisew Cree First Nation (AB) 65.8%
• Bearspaw First Nation (AB) 65.6%
• Mosakahiken Cree Nation (MB) 65.5%
• Swan Lake First Nation (MB) 65.4%
• Muskoday First Nation (SK) 65.3%
• Tootinaowaziibeeng Treaty Reserve (MB) 64.8 %
• Ochapowace First Nation (SK) 64.8%
• Fort McMurray First Nation (AB) 64.2%
These First Nations scored the lowest in the Index:• Thunderchild First Nation (SK) 56.3%
• Pine Creek First Nation (MB) 56.2%
• Kinistin Saulteaux Nation (SK) 56%
• Canupawakpa Dakota First Nation (MB) 55.6%
• Sturgeon Lake First Nation (SK) 55.5%
• Ermineskin Tribe (AB) 55%
• Dene Tha’ First Nation (AB) 54%
• Poundmaker Cree Nation (SK) 52.3%
• Blood Tribe (AB) 52%
• Key First Nation (SK) 50%
• Swan River First Nation (AB) 46%
• Piikani Nation (AB) 45.9%
The balance of the First Nations surveyed ranked in between these highest and lowest-performing bands. A full list of their scores appears later in this report. A map of their locations is also included.
Here are the top five results from each province:
Don Sandberg, Aboriginal Policy Fellow
was born in the Pas, Manitoba and raised in the northern community of Gillam, Manitoba. He attended school with the peoples of the Fox Lake First Nation. He is a Band member of the Norway House Cree Nation, where his mother attended residential school. Has lived in First Nations communities in BC and Manitoba He is a first cousin to former Assembly of First Nations Grand Chief Ovide Mercredi. Mr. Sandberg was a columnist for the Aboriginal paper “The Drum” for several years. He has been employed with many First Nations in both Manitoba and British Columbia over the years in senior management positions. In 1999, Mr. Sandberg ran as a Liberal candidate in the Manitoba Provincial election. He has spoken on native issues at political forums and on television and radio over the years. He is constantly in touch with the people and the issues on many First Nations and brings forward on their behalf the problems and possible solutions that affect them.