The Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development (FIP: Indian and Northern Affairs Canada, French: Affaires indiennes et du Nord Canada, DIAND) is the department of the government of Canada with responsibility for policies relating to First Nations of Canada and Canada's three northern territories. The term "Indian" as referenced in the department's name refers to Status Indians defined by the Indian Act. The department is also responsible for the Inuit and Métis of Canada. The department is overseen by the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development, currently Chuck Strahl.
The Department of Indian and Northern Affairs has its origins in the Department of the Interior, a body created by John A. Macdonald for the purpose of administering the Dominion Lands Act of 1872. When the Department of the Interior dissolved in 1936 (with the Natural Resources Transfer Acts returning sovereignty over their own natural resources to the Prairie provinces), Indian Affairs fell under the purview of the Department of Mines and Resources. However, the need for social and health-care services in the North led to the establishment of the Northern Administration and Lands branch in 1951, which led to the creation of the Department of Northern Affairs and National Resources in 1953. This became the Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development in 1966, which remains the department's legal name today. Under the Federal Identity Program, the department is known as Indian and Northern Affairs Canada.