National Sorry Day 2020 Message from the Assembly

It was on this day back in 1997 that the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission’s Bringing them Home Report was tabled in Federal Parliament.

It followed the Commission’s National Inquiry into the Separation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children from their Families.

The report recommended that all Australian parliaments apologise to the Stolen Generations.

By 2001 all state and territory governments had complied, but federally, John Howard’s Coalition government refused to issue an apology.

It wasn’t until the 13th of February 2008 that Labor Prime Minister Kevin Rudd stood in parliament to issue that national apology.

Today is also the third anniversary of the Uluru Statement from the Heart.

Here at the Assembly, we remember the wrongs of the past, recognise the ongoing hurt the Stolen Generations and their families still live with, and call for respect, recognition and cooperation in the future.