The Public Interest Advocacy Centre has welcomed the NSW Government’s announcement of a limited reparations scheme for members of the Stolen Generations.
PIAC has called for reparations over many years, most recently in a detailed submission to the inquiry by a Standing Committee of the NSW Legislative Council (available on the publications section of our website).
‘The recognition by government of the harm caused to Aboriginal people and communities by the policies of child removal, and the willingness to make reparations, is welcome. We look forward to reviewing the detail of the scheme,’ said PIAC CEO Jonathon Hunyor.
‘This is a step in the right direction, but the limitations of the scheme mean that the broader package of supports for survivors, their families and communities, along with investment in cultural renewal, will be critical to assessing whether this is a fair and just response.
‘The scheme’s limitations include a cap of $75,000 on compensation, and the exclusion of claims associated with wages held in trust by the NSW Government and never returned.
‘The scheme will also not provide payments for descendants or for other loss suffered by survivors including denial of education and employment opportunities.
‘Almost every Aboriginal family has been affected by the government policies and practices that resulted in the removal of Aboriginal children from their families and communities.
‘It will be critical for Aboriginal people and survivors of the Stolen Generations to be at the heart of the government’s efforts to deal with this unfinished business.
‘The process of applying to the scheme needs to be as simple and quick as possible, given that many members of the Stolen Generations are now elderly.
‘I also hope that members of the Stolen Generations will receive adequate support in making their applications,’ added Jonathon Hunyor.
You can view PIAC’s ‘Stolen Generations’ video on YouTube.
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