Living arrangements of children from birth to 5 years of age by Indigenous group, Canada, 2016

Source: CICH graphic created using data adapted from Statistics Canada. Diverse family characteristics of Aboriginal children aged 0 to 4. Census in Brief. Census of Population, 2016. -accessed October 20, 2017.

In 2016, 60% of Indigenous children aged 0 to 4 lived in a family with two parents.

Fifty-four per cent of First Nations children under 5 lived with two parents, as did 72% of Métis and 69% of Inuit children in this age group.

More than one-third of Indigenous children aged 0 to 4 lived with a lone-parent. This was the case for 39% of First Nations, 26% of Métis and 27% of Inuit children in this age group.

Indigenous children accounted for 7.7% of all children aged 0 to 4, and about one-half of all foster children in this age group.


Indigenous children have diverse and varied living arrangements. While most live in families with a married couple, they are less likely than non-Indigenous children to be living with married parents and more likely to be living in other types of family arrangements. While living in a lone parent household likely results in socio-economic disadvantages to Indigenous children, it is important to remember that in Indigenous cultures, child-rearing is traditionally shared among extended families and communities.1

1Lafrance, J., & Collins, D. (2013). Residential schools and Aboriginal parenting: voices of parents. Native Social Work Journal, 4(1), 104-125.