In during the European colonization. The Aboriginals were

In Canada, Indigenous people constitute around 4.3% of the total population. Within this fraction, the suicide rate amongst indigenous youth is 5 to 6 times the suicide rate seen in the general population (Stewart, 6) Cultural disruption in Indigenous communities is greatly associated with depression, suicide, alcoholism and violence, particularly when it comes to Indigenous youth. The reason behind the mental illnesses faced by Indigenous peoples is viewed differently by Anthropologists, Sociologists and Psychologists. An Anthropologist would describe that the loss of cultural identity led to mental illnesses. A sociologist, however, would focus more on the socio economic status of Indigenous Peoples and how that affects their wellbeing. Lastly, a Psychologist would focus more on the repercussions of the abuse that many children faced.An Anthropologist would view this situation by looking at the beginning of Aboriginal trauma, which began during the European colonization. The Aboriginals were the victims of colonization. It caused the destruction of their homes, cultures and lives. Through the lens of Anthropology, mental illnesses in Indigenous communities can be viewed as a result of the loss of their culture and identity. In 1920, under the Indian Act, it was mandatory for every Aboriginal child to attend Indian Residential Schools. This system educated the children into European-Christian ways of living and assimilated them into Canadian society. Indian Residential Schools were not learning places, as hundreds of testimonials tell us, they were sites of unlearning. They were forced to unlearn their language, values, beliefs and practices and they ultimately lost their identity (Stolen Lives,7). The children experienced physical, sexual and emotional abuse as the goal of the staff was “to kill the Indian in the child” and assimilate them into Canada’s “white” mainstream (Al Jazeera). This hatred that many Indigenous people had to face, in Indian Residential Schools, was solely because they had different cultural practices. At such a young age, these children lost who they were. They had no connection with their families, and they did not know who they came from or where they belonged. This disconnection from their culture greatly impacted their mental health. A research study performed at the University of Toronto found that Indigenous identity development and the ways that one views themselves as an Indigenous person, contributes to wellbeing and mental health after the trauma they have faced (Kirmeyer, Simpson & Cargo, 2003). In order for the Indigenous community to recover from the trauma they have faced, it is crucial that they reconnect with their culture. Culture is a huge part of one’s life, elements of culture such as ideas, languages, beliefs, songs, art – could act like genes, capable of being transmitted to others and reproduced (Wired for Culture). Indian Residential Schools created this wedge between Indigenous people and their culture which prevented them to pass it on to future generations. This removal of cultural identity by the Indian Residential Schools was a major cause of mental illnesses. A Sociologist would describe the high suicide rate in Indigenous communities to be linked to the repercussions of systemic racism that greatly impacted the lives of many Aboriginals in Canada. This systemic racism led to Indian Residential Schools, the Indian Act, Sixties Scoop, and the child welfare crisis. Systemic Racism is racism that is embedded in our society. This mindset is built into our institutions, policies, practices, and behaviour that results in an inequitable amount of resources and rights given to Canadians and denied to Indigenous communities ( Nicki Lisa, Phd, “Definition of Systemic Racism in Sociology.”). These rights and resources taken by Canadians essentially gave them more power over Indigenous Peoples, and they used their power to demolish the Indigenous community by putting them in Indian Residential Schools and by separating them from their families. The abuse Indigenous Peoples faced, both physically and emotionally, has left a huge scar on many Indigenous communities and most importantly has impaired the mental health of countless people.  This systemic racism is still believed to still exist in our healthcare system as the government devotes no resources currently to try and support these affected communities. The government does not provide counselling, suicide prevention and basic mental health resources. Yet, there are countless accessible resources available to the rest of Canadians today. This can be explained using out-group derogation, which is the essentially acting on a bias against a group of  people who share a different culture or beliefs as the ingroup. The fact that the government is denying rights and resources to Indigenous Communities solely because they do not identify as Canadians, demonstrates the out-group derogation theory. Depression and mental illnesses are also a result of social and economic environments. Through the lense of Sociology, there are a variety of causes for mental illness including socioeconomic status, gender, race/ethnicity, and age. Excluding cases of genetically passed down mental illnesses, the reason behind many of those who suffer from mental illnesses is due to economic issues. This includes overcrowded housing, lack of clean drinking water and ultimately our crumbling infrastructure.The idea of socioeconomic status can be explained using the intertwined theories of Social Causation and the Selection/Drift theory. Social Causation essentially states that experiencing economic hardships,  which is a fundamental issue that Indigenous communities are facing,  increases the risk of mental illness in the near future. According to CBC, poverty rates are the highest for First Nations kids living on reserves in Manitoba at 76 percent. This is due to barriers which include underfunded schools and child welfare services which ultimately prevents children from reaching their full potential in school. The lack of resources provided by the government results in unfortunate poverty faced by the majority of individuals, which can possibly result in depression or suicide in the future. The Selection Drift Theory explains the idea that mental illnesses that may have been passed genetically, can prevent socioeconomic attainment and result in never being able to escape poverty. This idea of social inequality can greatly influence the lives of many people. Living in an environment where there is no access to sustainable resources and quality education can truly damage one’s mental health.  Better living conditions will ultimately eliminate reasons that may lead someone to commit suicide. Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Depression and Anxiety are the three common mental illnesses amongst Indigenous Peoples. A research study done by the National Collaborating Centre for Aboriginal Mental Health, indicates that Indigenous Peoples  are more likely to experience traumatic events in their lifetime than non-Indigenous people. The long-term effects of sexual, emotional and physical abuse suffered by many of those who attended Indian Residential Schools has been a major concern within the Aboriginal community. Intergenerational trauma, which is the process by which trauma and stress are passed down from generation to generation, is associated with the residential school experience. The British Columbia Aboriginal Survivor’s Study  found that of 127 residential school survivors, 64.2% experience repercussions from post-traumatic stress disorder. The abuse resulted in the traumatization of thousands of children directly or indirectly through intergenerational trauma and left psychological scars which resulted in Depression, Anxiety, PTSD, Personal Disruptions, Addictions and Triggers. In the 1960’s,  many Indigenous children were taken out of their homes and were placed for adoption or fostering, this is better known as the “Sixties Scoop.” Based on the social issues Indigenous communities faced such as poverty, addiction and unemployment, social workers took the Indigenous children out of their homes in order to protect them. However, in most cases their parents did not give consent as they had little or no warning that their children were being taken away from them. Approximately 70 percent of the children apprehended were placed into non-Indigenous homes, and in many of those homes, their heritage was denied (Sinclair, 66). The Sixties Scoop had a huge psychological impact on the families involved. The children were traumatized when they were taken away from their parents and thrown into foster homes. Unfortunately, many children also faced horrific abuse, physically, sexually and emotionally, while in these homes. This led to psychological and emotional problems, even in their adulthood. Many parents also suffered lasting psychological problems such as PTSD, since their children were abruptly taken away from them and their families were torn apart. In Canada, Indigenous youth die due to suicide about five to six times more than non-Indigenous youth (World Health Organization). An Anthropologist, Sociologist and Psychologist would view the horrific suicide rate in Indigenous Communities as a result of their mental health instability. The loss of their cultural identity through Indian Residential Schools, and the Sixties Scoop, as they were assimilated into Canada, led to various mental illnesses. Although these events were taken place decades ago, the federal government continues to ignore the cries and calls of agony in Indigenous communities across Canada. The government provides no support to those living in poverty or those suffering from mental illnesses or addictions. The traumatic events that Indigenous people have gone through such as abuse, is unforgivable. However, in order to mend our relationship and trust with Indigenous people, it is crucial that we provide emotional support and resources to help those who are suffering from mental illnesses.