13 February 2008

Sorry is the first step

Above is the Australian Aboriginal flag, created in 1971 by Harold Thomas.

It's been a long time coming but this morning, the Australian Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd, will apologise to the aboriginal people and the stolen generations, for the injustices and hurt caused by government policies of the past.

There is a full story
about it here, but for those of you who know little of our history it used to be government policy to take some aboriginal children from their parents and have them raised by church institutions or white families. About 100,000 families were affected between 1910 and 1970.

Australia is divided on this issue. Many people think we should not apologise for something we didn't do but I agree with Kevin Rudd. I think it is the right thing for him, as the current Prime Minister, to apologise for the actions of former governments that we now know to be wrong and which caused a lot of pain and sorrow.

Today, the Neighbourhood Centre I work at is hosting a morning tea for our town's residents so we can watch the apology together. I have an Aboriginal flag to hang as a sign of respect for our fellow Australians.

This is an historic day in Australia. I hope the apology will help heal the stolen generations and their families. We have a long way to go but hopefully this will be the first step towards reconciliation
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