Independent Senators Group
Lawyer, health advocate, and the first Indigenous Senator from Ontario
- A lawyer with a background in nursing, Yvonne Boyer has spent her career advocating for Indigenous health to improve the delivery of health services, challenge prejudices, and promote Indigenous treaty rights through constitutional protections. She was a senior policy analyst and legal advisor for the National Aboriginal Health Organization, in-house council for the Native Women's Association of Canada, member of the Canadian Human Rights Commission, member of the Federation of Saskatchewan Indian Nations First Nations Appeals Tribunal, and served as legal advisor to the Canadian Nurses Protective Society.
- In 2017, Senator Boyer co-authored a report with Métis physician Dr. Judith Bartlett which described the sterilization of seven Indigenous women in Saskatchewan. The report led to a deluge of stories from women across the country about their treatment under the Canadian healthcare system. She advocates for "structural changes" allowing Indigenous people to co-design the healthcare system so that Indigenous people can become empowered as full partners and receive higher quality services.