In Canada, the term usually designates a constitutionally recognized individual born of an Aboriginal group descended primarily from the marriages of Scottish and French men to Cree, Saulteaux, and Ojibwa women in southern Rupert's Land starting in the late 17th century, and the marriages of French women to Ojibway men starting in Quebec in the middle 17th century . Their constitutional rights are represented by a growing number of organisations in Canada, such as the Manitoba Métis Federation (MMF), and the United States, including the Métis National Council. The MNC voices issues (mainly of self-government) directly to the Government of Canada and internationally, but these issues are usually limited to the Métis of the western regions of Canada. Other Canadian organizations serving Métis interests include the Congress of Aboriginal Peoples in Canada and the newly started Council of Diaspora Métis, an organization serving Métis people living outside of North America, usually within the territory of the European Union.
Jack Forbes attempted to revive the term Mestee as a term for the old mixed-race groups in his book Africans and Native Americans: The Language of Race and the Evolution of Red-Black Peoples (1993).
The word Mestee is derived from Middle French Mestis (pronounced the same), which became Métis in modern French. This is cognate with Mestizo in Spanish and Mestiço in Portuguese, all ultimately deriving from Latin mixtus meaning "mixed". Many dictionaries incorrectly attribute it to a corruption of Mestizo.