Monday, 11 February 2008
The Great Sorry.... At last!!!
Doris Pilkington Garimara reading from her book
'Follow the rabbit proof fence'
University College London 2002
We are the Stolen Generation; kidnapped from hapiness.
A mum and dad we never knew still linger in my heart.
Why, why do you deny our past?
Between 1910 and 1970 up to 100,000 Aboriginal children were taken forcibly or under duress from their families bypolice or welfare officers .
Most were under 5 years old. There was rarely any judicial process. To be Aboriginal was enough. They are known as the ‘Stolen Generations’
The main motive was to ‘assimilate’ Aboriginal children into European society over one or two generations by denying and destroying their Aboriginality.
Speaking their languages and practising their ceremonies was forbidden
They were taken miles from their country, some overseas
Parents were not told where their children were and could not trace them
Children were told that they were orphans
Family visits were discouraged or forbidden; letters were destroyed.
The federal government of Australia, led by Kevin Rudd, has announced it will issue a formal apology to the Stolen Generations on February 13, 2008