Dispelling Myths about First Nations Chief’s Salaries

First nations chiefs are essentially CEOs these days. And with the First Nations Financial Transparancy Act we can see how much they’re making – see here for the data.

Now that list includes counselors so I pulled only chiefs and based this on the results.

Remember, these are CEOs. In addition to managing Treaty & Indian Act money coming in from the government they also manage various band run businesses, land and many other organizations.

Average salary: $80,00
Median salary: $75,000 (median Canadian salary is $70,000)

# paid less than poverty line: 76 (11%)
# paid less than canadian average salary: 179 (26%)
# paid less than middle class salary: 230 (34%)
# paid less than canadian median salary: 286 (42%)
# paid middle class salary 185 (27%)
# paid more than canadian middle class salary: 264 (39%)
# making it into the top 100 highest paid CEOs: 0

The highest paid chief made $930,793 but remember most of that (86% to be exact) was a bonus for negotiating a $8 million land deal for the band.

Only 15% of chiefs are even classed as “rich” (earning over $125,000 per year). To put that into perspective, more chiefs are earning less than $30,000.
So it looks like in general the “rich chief” myth isn’t just misleading, it’s completely wrong.

Education and the Aboriginal wage gap

The National Post had an article this morning titled “Government stumped as report shows aboriginal wage gap widening, unemployment growing”

The federal government touted a number of initiatives Wednesday for improving First Nations’ well-being but could not explain why a new report showed the prosperity gap between aboriginal and non-aboriginal people was widening in some cases.
source

There are a lot of reasons for the wage gap but I’m going to focus on one. And yes, it’s education. I discussed this earlier but I want to go into a bit more detail.

Continue reading “Education and the Aboriginal wage gap”

Aboriginal Access to Post-Secondary

Aboriginal people make up 6% of BC and the percentage is rising quickly.

From an economic standpoint there’s a huge wage gap between aboriginal and non aboriginal workers pay based on looking at full time workers with the same career classification. But the good news is that the more education an aboriginal person has the closer that gap is. In fact the gap almost disappears for aboriginal people with a masters degree or higher. But Aboriginal people are less likely to go to post secondary, with only 45% of working age aboriginal people having a post secondary certificate diploma or degree compared to 62% for non aboriginal residents.

Continue reading “Aboriginal Access to Post-Secondary”