18 March 2020
The Victorian Aboriginal Child Care Agency welcomes the establishment of a Reparations Scheme for Stolen Generations Survivors in Victoria as announced by the Victorian State Government today.
VACCA CEO Adjunct Professor Muriel Bamblett AO says “It is time we made compensation to the survivors of the Stolen Generations in Victoria – in accordance with one of the key recommendations of the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission’s Inquiry into the Separation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children from their Families in 1997 the Bringing them Home Report.”
“A Reparations Scheme is important in supporting the healing of survivors who continue to feel the profound impacts of being removed from family, culture and Country today”, adds Muriel
“It will also go some way towards addressing the intergenerational impacts which have been clearly highlighted through research.”
“The Andrews government has listened to our voices and once again is highlighting its commitment to self-determination for Aboriginal People in Victoria”
A Stolen Generations Reparations Scheme in Victoria needs to be established to provide compensation for an act of genocide in contravention of the Genocide Convention Act 1949, through forced removal, cultural denial and assimilation of the Stolen Generations.
The new Scheme will sit in parallel to the National Redress Scheme which was established to provide compensation specifically to people who have experienced institutionalised child sexual abuse.
Eligible Stolen Generations survivors who experienced institutionalised child sexual abuse, should receive compensation through both redress and reparations schemes.
Stolen Generations Survivor, Eva Jo Edwards says “No compensation can take away the impacts of our trauma, however a reparations scheme will enable us to acknowledge the wrongs of past government policies and ensure our history is learnt and told.”
Providing compensation to the Stolen Generations will, as part of a broader reparations scheme, bring Victoria in line with the United Nations’ Van Boven Principles, detailed and endorsed in the Bringing them Home Report as the appropriate framework for responding to the gross violation of human rights.
The devastating impacts experienced by the Stolen Generations who were forcibly removed from their families under various government policies is still felt today.
Receiving compensation and recognition of the devastating trauma the Stolen Generations endured is a key element of their healing journey.
For all media queries contact VACCA Communications Manager Vanessa Morris on firstname.lastname@example.org