Stolen Generations

Stolen Generations timeline

Explore the timeline of the Stolen Generations—from the Board for the Protection of Aborigines to the Prime Minister's apology and beyond.

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2000

  1. The government denies that a 'Stolen Generation' exists in a submission to the Senate inquiry on compensation for children forcibly removed. It stated: "The government is concerned that there is no reliable basis for what appears to be a generally accepted conclusion as to the supposed dimensions of the 'stolen generation'. [...] At most, it might be inferred that up to 10% of children were separated for a variety of reasons, both protective and otherwise, some forcibly and some not. This does not constitute a 'generation' of 'stolen' children. The phrase 'stolen generation' is rhetorical." 

2001

  1. The Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission & PIAC (Public Interest Advocacy Centre) hold the Moving Forward Conference. The conference aims to explore ways of providing reparations to Indigenous people forcibly removed from their families.

    For 18 years the State of Victoria referred to me as State Ward No 54321.

    — Paul, personal story in the Bringing Them Home Report
  2. The British Concise Oxford Dictionary includes the phrase 'stolen generation' in its latest edition. The term is defined as: "Noun. Australian. The aboriginal people forcibly removed from their families as children between the 1900s and the 1960s, to be brought up by white foster families or in institutions."

  3. Pope John Paul II issues a formal apology on behalf of the Vatican to the affected Aboriginal families for the actions of any and all Catholic authorities or organisations in connection with the Stolen Generations.

2002

  1. The first member of the Stolen Generations is awarded compensation in the NSW Victims Compensation Tribunal for the sexual assault and injuries she suffered after authorities removed her from her family.

  2. The Public Interest Advocacy Centre (PIAC) releases Restoring Identity - the follow-up report to the Moving Forward Conference. The report presents a proposal for a reparations tribunal.

  3. The Sorry Day Committee releases the Parliamentary Seminar Report: Are We Bringing Them Home? The Report surveys the progress in the implementation of the Bringing them home recommendations.

  4. National Library of Australia publishes an Oral History Project, Many Voices: Reflections on Experience of Indigenous Child Separation.

  5. The first member of the Stolen Generations is awarded compensation in the NSW Victims Compensation Tribunal for the sexual assault and injuries she suffered after authorities removed her from her family. Valerie Linow was 16 when she was working as a domestic servant for a family and suffering sexual assault and violence. Mrs Linow was awarded $35,000 in compensation. She said "It's not the money that's important to me. It is the knowledge and recognition that this happened to Aboriginal people. No one could pay any amount for what happened to us because we lost a lot."

    I'm the only one out of thousands of members of the stolen generations who got through and was believed that these things did happen. This is the most important thing - the believing.

    — Valerie Linow, member of the Stolen Generations The Age, 18/10/2002
  6. As part of the Victorian Government's response to the Bringing Them Home Report, Victoria establishes a Stolen Generations taskforce.

2003

  1. The Ministerial Council for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Affairs (MCATSIA) commissions and releases an independent evaluation of government and non-government responses to the Bringing Them Home Report.

  2. The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice Commissioner publicly criticises the failure of governments to provide financial and social reparations for members of the Stolen Generation, a national apology, or the appropriate mechanisms for individuals that were forcibly removed to reconnect with their culture.

2004

  1. The Commonwealth Government establishes a memorial to the Stolen Generations at Reconciliation Place in Canberra.

  2. The Commonwealth government establishes a memorial to the Stolen Generations at Reconciliation Place in Canberra.

  3. 461 'Sorry Books' recording the thoughts of Australians on the unfolding history of the Stolen Generations are inscribed on the Australian Memory of the World Register, part of UNESCO's programme to protect and promote documentary material with significant historical value.

2005

  1. The first official Sorry Day ceremony outside Australia is hosted in Lincoln Fields, London, on 25 May 2005.

  2. The organisation Stolen Generations Victoria is set up as a result of the 2003 report of the Stolen Generations taskforce. Its purpose is to establish a range of support and referral services that will assist Stolen Generation peoples to reconnect with their family, community, culture and land.

  3. The National Sorry Day Committee announces that this year, Sorry Day will be a 'National Day of Healing for All Australians' in an attempt to better engage the non-Indigenous Australian community with the plight of the 'Stolen Generations'.

  4. Volume two of the Western Australian Aboriginal Child Health Survey is released. The report says that 12.3% of the carers of Indigenous children aged 0-17 in Western Australia were forcibly removed from their families. Compared with other Indigenous children, the children of members of the Stolen Generations are twice as likely to have emotional and behavioural problems, to be at high risk for hyperactivity, emotional and conduct disorders, and twice as likely to abuse alcohol and drugs.

  5. The first official Sorry Day ceremony outside Australia is hosted in Lincoln Fields, London, on 25 May 2005.

References

View article sources (0)

[15881] John Herron, 'A generation was not stolen' (federal government's submission to the Senate inquiry), The Sydney Morning Herald, April 4, 2000

Cite this page

Korff, J 2021, Stolen Generations timeline, <https://www.creativespirits.info/aboriginalculture/politics/stolen-generations/stolen-generations-timeline?page=3&//>, retrieved 30 November 2021

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