POLITICAL APPOINTMENT OF DOCTORS
TO SERVE FIRST NATIONS PEOPLES, ENDS: 1960s
In spite of Nova Scotia's neglect, things did change for the better for the Mi'kmaq in the 1960s. Indian Affairs abolished the practice of designating on welfare assistance purchase orders which store the People could purchase goods from. A short time later it was decided that welfare payments would be made in cash. Another far-reaching decision made in the early sixties was that the doctors, dentists and so on who served Registered Indians would no longer be appointed based on their political affiliation. In fact, they would no longer be appointed at all!
The end of these practices was received with enthusiasm by First Nations citizens across the country. It's hard to describe how degrading and humiliating it is to be told what doctor, dentist, store etc. you may use and even what you could buy. Especially so, when some of the people you were required to give your business to were among the worst racial bigots in the community. These changes finally gave First Nations citizens some choices, and with choices came better diets and health care.
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