• In general, Aboriginal people experienced HIV at rates about 3.6 times higher than other Canadians in 2008.  (1) 
  • Aboriginal people living in Manitoba make up 14% of the First Nations population in Canada; and 18% of the Métis population live in Manitoba. (2)

There is continued overrepresentation of HIV among Aboriginal people in Manitoba

  • 27% of HIV cases were Aboriginal in 2009.  (3)
  • 38% of new patients in the Manitoba HIV Program in 2010 were Aboriginal.  (4)

Out of reporting ethnic populations in Manitoba, the Aboriginal population has the highest number of newly testing positive for HIV

  • Between 1999 to 2008, 35% of HIV cases self-reported Aboriginal ethnicity.  (5)

The Aboriginal population is more vulnerable to contracting HIV and AIDS because of unique factors and social determinants of health

A person’s vulnerability [to HIV infection] increases or decreases based on:

  • income,
  • education,
  • unemployment,
  • access to stable housing,
  • early childhood development (e.g. history of child abuse),
  • physical environments (e.g. geographically isolated communities, prison environments),
  • access to health services,
  • support networks and social environments (e.g. homophobia, HIV/AIDS-related stigma and discrimination),
  • gender,
  • a history of sexual violence, and,

For this [Aboriginal] population in particular, racism and the multigenerational effects of colonialism and the residential school system.  (6)

  • “When Aboriginal people are marginalized by socio-economic conditions, they are more vulnerable to HIV and other poor health outcomes, which translate into difficulty in accessing testing, higher risk of delayed diagnoses of HIV, and barriers adhering to proper care.”  (7)

(1)  Public Health Agency of Canada, Population-Specific HIV/AIDS Status Report: Aboriginal Peoples, 2008 at 19, [PHAC].

(2) PHAC at 4 to 5.

(3)  Public Health and Primary Health Care Division,   Manitoba Health Statistical Update: HIV and AIDS, 2009 retrieved at on October 20, 2011at 3 [Statistical Update].

(4)  Manitoba HIV Program, 2010 Manitoba HIV Program Update, retrieved at on October 20, 2011 at 3 [Program Update].

(5)  Statistical Update at 9.

(6)  PHAC at vii.

(7)  Program Update at 5.

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