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Commitments needed to build on the National Apology to the Stolen Generations

Media Release
Rachel Siewert 26 May 2014

The Australian Greens have marked National Sorry Day, committing to ongoing work towards delivering on the spirit of the National Apology to the Stolen Generations and the recommendations of the ‘Bringing Them Home' report.

"National Sorry Day is a significant occasion that reminds us of the strength and struggles of many thousands of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people affected by forcible removal," Senator Rachel Siewert, Australian Greens spokesperson on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander issues said today.

"Today, people around the country will gather to reflect on the mistakes of past policies and their serious, long lasting consequences, but we should also remember the importance of working together to build on the spirit of the Apology.

"It must be a focus of Government to deliver on the recommendations of the "Bringing Them Home" report, ensure that there is Constitutional Recognition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and that the gaps in health, employment, education and life expectancy are closed.

"It is disappointing that the recent budget has seen $534 million taken from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander programs, and that the National Congress of Australia's First Peoples have been defunded while the flawed Stronger Futures regime continues unabated.

"Many recommendations of the "Bringing Them Home" report are yet to be acted upon, and issues such as compensation and financial reparations have not been addressed. Many of the cuts in the budget will impact on Stolen Generations, affecting their access to services and supports.

"I encourage MPs and people across the community to mark National Sorry Day and redouble efforts to deliver equality, respect and recognition," Senator Siewert concluded.

 

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