Though Canadian Health Minister Leona Aglukkaq outlined how the country will be spending $21 million over five years to conduct research on how to address gaps in health equality domestically and abroad, not one of these studies will directly target Canada’s Indigenous peoples.

While First Nations groups have long complained about the inequities between health care for Aboriginals when compared to the rest of the country, Aglukkaq said she is confident that these studies will be of benefit to all Canadians.

In late August, Aglukkaq defended the studies to the CBC.

“I’m not afraid of that because we have to look at health care overall instead of silos. The project does not specify one ethnic group or another. It is very inclusive that way. The projects that are being rolled out in terms of research will include every Canadian and will contribute to improving the inequities that we are currently seeing throughout the country,” said Aglukkaq.

Though no specific Aboriginal communities were targeted in any of the five major studies the government will be funding, Aglukkaq said that Canadian health would be looked at in a broader sense.

However, only time will tell if the needs of Aboriginal Canadians, who suffer significantly poorer health than the rest of the country, will actually be counted in this costly research.