Another stolen generation: how Australia still wrecks Aboriginal families

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Post by Guest on Fri Mar 21, 2014 11:12 pm

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Another stolen generation: how Australia still wrecks Aboriginal families
The mass removal of Indigenous children from their parents continues unabated – where is the outrage?

The tape is searing. There is the voice of an infant screaming as he is wrenched from his mother, who pleads, "There is nothing wrong with my baby. Why are you doing this to us? I would've been hung years ago, wouldn't I? Because [as an Aboriginal Australian] you're guilty before you're found innocent." The child's grandmother demands to know why "the stealing of our kids is happening all over again". A welfare official says, "I'm gunna take him, mate."

This happened to an Aboriginal family in outback New South Wales. It is happening across Australia in a scandalous and largely unrecognised abuse of human rights that evokes the infamous stolen generation of the last century. Up to the 1970s, thousands of mixed-race children were stolen from their mothers by welfare officials. The children were given to institutions as cheap or slave labour; many were abused.

Described by a chief protector of Aborigines as "breeding out the colour", the policy was known as assimilation. It was influenced by the same eugenics movement that inspired the Nazis. In 1997 a landmark report, Bringing Them Home, disclosed that as many 50,000 children and their mothers had endured "the humiliation, the degradation and sheer brutality of the act of forced separation ... the product of the deliberate, calculated policies of the state". The report called this genocide.

Assimilation remains Australian government policy in all but name. Euphemisms such as "reconciliation" and "Stronger Futures" cover similar social engineering and an enduring, insidious racism in the political elite, the bureaucracy and wider Australian society. When in 2008 prime minister Kevin Rudd apologised for the stolen generation, he added: "I want to be blunt about this. There will be no compensation." The Sydney Morning Herald congratulated Rudd on a "shrewd manoeuvre" that "cleared away a piece of political wreckage in a way that responds to some of its own supporters' emotional needs, yet changes nothing".

Today, the theft of Aboriginal children – including babies taken from the birth table – is now more widespread than at any time during the last century. As of June last year, almost 14,000 Aboriginal children had been "removed". This is five times the number when Bringing Them Home was written. More than a third of all removed children are Aboriginal – from 3% of the population. At the present rate, this mass removal of Aboriginal children will result in a stolen generation of more than 3,300 children in the Northern Territory alone.

Pat (not her real name) is the mother whose anguish was secretly recorded on a phone as four department of child services officials, and six police, descended on her home. On the tape an official claims they have come only for an "assessment". But two of the police officers, who knew Pat, told her they saw no risk to her child and warned her to "get out of here quick". Pat fled, cradling her infant, but the one-year-old was eventually seized without her knowing why. The next morning a police officer returned to apologise to her and said her baby should never have been taken away. Pat has no idea where her son is.

Once she was "invited" by officials to bring her children to "neutral" offices to discuss a "care plan". The doors were locked and officials seized the children, with one of the youngest dragging on a police officer's gun belt. Many Indigenous mothers are unaware of their legal rights. A secretive children's court has become notorious for rubber-stamping removals.

Most Aboriginal families live on the edge. Their life expectancy in towns a short flight from Sydney is as low as 37. Dickensian diseases are rife; Australia is the only developed country not to have eradicated trachoma, which blinds Aboriginal children.

Pat has both complied with and struggled bravely against a punitive bureaucracy that can remove children on hearsay. She has twice been acquitted of false charges, including "kidnapping" her own children. A psychologist has described her as a capable and good mother.

Josie Crawshaw, the former director of a respected families' support organisation in Darwin, told me: "In remote areas, officials will go in with a plane in the early hours and fly the child thousands of kilometres from their community. There'll be no explanation, no support, and the child may be gone forever."

In 2012 the co-ordinator general of remote services for the Northern Territory, Olga Havnen, was sacked when she revealed that almost A$80m (£44m) was spent on the surveillance and removal of Aboriginal children compared with only A$500,000 (£275,000) on supporting the same impoverished families. She told me: "The primary reasons for removing children are welfare issues directly related to poverty and inequality. The impact is just horrendous because if they are not reunited within six months, it's likely they won't see each other again. If South Africa was doing this, there'd be an international outcry."

She and others with long experience I have interviewed have echoed the Bringing them Home report, which described an official "attitude" in Australia that regarded all Aboriginal people as "morally deficient". A department of family and community services spokesman said that most removed Indigenous children in New South Wales were placed with Indigenous carers. According to Indigenous support networks, this is a smokescreen; it does not mean families, and it is control by divisiveness that is the bureaucracy's real achievement.

I met a group of Aboriginal grandmothers, all survivors of the first stolen generation, all now with stolen grandchildren. "We live in a state of fear, again," they said. David Shoebridge, a state Greens MP, told me: "The truth is, there is a market among whites for these kids, especially babies."

The New South Wales parliament is soon to debate legislation that introduces forced adoption and "guardianship". Children under two years old will be liable – without the mother's consent – if "removed" for more than six months. For many Aboriginal mothers like Pat, it can take six months merely to make contact with their children. "It's setting up Aboriginal families to fail," said Shoebridge.

I asked Josie Crawshaw why. "The wilful ignorance in Australia about its first people has now become the kind of intolerance that gets to the point where you can smash an entire group of humanity and there is no fuss."

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/mar/21/john-pilger-indigenous-australian-families

Bee will tell you this doesn't happen. The evidence will tell you it does.


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Post by Guest on Sun Mar 30, 2014 10:33 pm

Sassy wrote:Excuse me - aren't you the one who broke our friendship, weren't you the one who called me allsorts and I never have worked out why.   Didn't I phone you to try and sort it out?   You are the one who wouldn't know friendship and I've never watched Neighbours in my life.   I have watched quite a lot of stuff made by aboriginals themselves, and my, haven't you changed your tune, bending over backwards to accommodate Bee.   Must be very painful.

I've never said all aboriginals, but there are a very large number who are treated like shit, which you always said, but can't bring yourself to be honest anymore.

And I don't manipulate anyone, they all have brains and can work things out for themselves.   It seems that the same can't be said for you when it comes to Quill.

You are a piece of work you do know that dont you.
I cant be doing Sassy honestly I cant. I shall leave you the last word just as you like it except to say the only reason you phoned me was because FTL shamed you into it and then all you did was shout about Didge, Stephen, Quill and Victor. As I said then, nothing can ever change because you will not accept you have ever said or done one thing wrong.

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Post by Guest on Sun Mar 30, 2014 10:35 pm

You what?   FTL shamed me?   You are off your rocker, completely.    Shouted about Didge etc, I asked you what the fuck was it all about and never did get an answer.   Trouble is now, I can post as I like and you don't like it.   Well tough frankly.

PS I think most people can see who the bitch is.   Especially after the welcome back thread.   Gracious you ain't.

Funnily enough, I have just been reminded that on Speak, 'manipulating men' was leveled against you, but I was stupid enough to defend you and say it was rubbish. I think that says it all.

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Post by Guest on Sun Mar 30, 2014 11:00 pm

Sassy wrote:You what?   FTL shamed me?   You are off your rocker, completely.    Shouted about Didge etc, I asked you what the fuck was it all about and never did get an answer.   Trouble is now, I can post as I like and you don't like it.   Well tough frankly.

PS I think most people can see who the bitch is.   Especially after the welcome back thread.   Gracious you ain't.

Funnily enough, I have just been reminded that on Speak, 'manipulating men' was leveled against you, but I was stupid enough to defend you and say it was rubbish.   I think that says it all.

Finished now?  Rolling Eyes 

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Post by captain on Mon Mar 31, 2014 1:31 am

In 2012 the co-ordinator general of remote services for the Northern Territory, Olga Havnen, was sacked when she revealed that almost A$80m (£44m) was spent on the surveillance and removal of Aboriginal children compared with only A$500,000 (£275,000) on supporting the same impoverished families. She told me: "The primary reasons for removing children are welfare issues directly related to poverty and inequality. The impact is just horrendous because if they are not reunited within six months, it's likely they won't see each other again. If South Africa was doing this, there'd be an international outcry."

This is a bloody disgrace and happening in our time. I would love to hear this being announced on the BBC, CNN ALL of the news media's
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Post by Guest on Mon Mar 31, 2014 10:08 am

Lone Wolf wrote:
Stephenmarra wrote:

Bee, both Sass and I (and Nems if the truth was known) has said that it was originally  the British that first abused the Aborigines . Alas there's no getting away from it, they were YOUR forefathers.

Also, this amount of hostility just ain't right......


cyclops   WRONG again, Stephen - but that's no great surprise.....

MY ancestry is largely Irish, Aboriginal and Scottish - only around 1/8 is English...

As always, you and Sassy again simply have no idea what is really happening down here ..  scratch   


AS FOR my level of "hostility" against Sassy's repetitive barbed attacks against me for nearly a year now ~ are YOU for real, Stephen' - you supercilious little twat !

MY amount of hostility is pretty well normal ~ considering the ongoing attacks against me..  
AND, just look at Veya's replies to this thread while you're about it...    Arrow


Och aye the noo Bee! Smile

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Post by nicko on Mon Mar 31, 2014 10:22 am

dear bee,the slums are the ones you live in,[they wasn't slums till you moved in] and again,please post where I have said anything racist! I haven't, so crawl back into your hovel and play with your boomerang! your are an obnoxious wanker.
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Post by nicko on Mon Mar 31, 2014 12:46 pm

Again I say when have I supported racists just because I have not commented on smelly's or others posts does not make me a racist. pull your neck in mate and don't make comments that you can't back up. p.s.your proberly a nice bloke away from your lap top. Don't be a keyboard warrior.
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Post by nicko on Tue Apr 01, 2014 12:09 pm

get stuffed yobbo,
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Post by nicko on Tue Apr 01, 2014 12:20 pm

hey dick face,i spent 15 yrs in ozi even joined your army and was sent to Vietnam. "what did you do in the war daddy" nothing love ,I hid under the bed!! lmao.
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Post by Guest on Tue Apr 01, 2014 12:26 pm

You were in Vietnam Nicko? While I worked for the New Zealand Air Force in Singapore I helped the Commanding Officer with the research and writing of the history of the New Zealand Air Force out there. I don't think many people even realise they were there and what they went through. It was not pretty. At the same time, the Indonesians were trying to blow us up in Singapore, a fun time was being had by everyone!

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Post by nicko on Tue Apr 01, 2014 12:41 pm

sassy, I did two tours in nam,hell on earth.
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Post by Guest on Tue Apr 01, 2014 12:45 pm

I'm talking to Nicko, there is something very wrong with you.

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Post by Guest on Tue Apr 01, 2014 12:47 pm

nicko wrote:sassy, I did two tours in nam,hell on earth.

It certainly was, went on many marches against it. I think it was only the fact that journalists could get there and report and film, and show people back home what was actually happening that stopped it in the end. Awful war, with misery on both sides.

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Post by veya_victaous on Tue Apr 08, 2014 3:39 am

captainJane wrote:In 2012 the co-ordinator general of remote services for the Northern Territory, Olga Havnen, was sacked when she revealed that almost A$80m (£44m) was spent on the surveillance and removal of Aboriginal children compared with only A$500,000 (£275,000) on supporting the same impoverished families. She told me: "The primary reasons for removing children are welfare issues directly related to poverty and inequality. The impact is just horrendous because if they are not reunited within six months, it's likely they won't see each other again. If South Africa was doing this, there'd be an international outcry."

This is a bloody disgrace and happening in our time. I would love to hear this being announced on the BBC, CNN ALL of the news media's

This is very misleading, the department responsible for Monitoring and prevention of child abuse (not specific to aboriginals) spent $80million it is a State Level department (as discussed earlier NT has additional issues of Not being a official state because there is Too few people). The department Responsible for Aboriginal welfare and poverty is a Federal level department, completely difference parliament with completely separate budgets. The better question is why is DOCs spending money on Aboriginal poverty, it has a specific charter to deal with child abuse, it should not be considering race.

Federal budget is $400Million for Indigenous affairs such as poverty.
http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/policy/jenny-macklin-taps-400m-aboriginal-fund-for-running-costs/story-fn9hm1pm-1226240324108#

Plus it is not really poverty, they could choose to live anywhere but a remote desert and they would have plenty. of course this is their traditional lands and life style (the never had anything more before)and some of their traditions constitute child abuse. their current life expectancy is significantly higher than their traditional life expectancy. It is really a case of their traditional lifestyle is poverty, by a Europeans eyes, anyone living in those remote deserts would be the same.

IF we left them alone and let them live like they always had... they would die younger, female children would be ceremonially gang raped at around 12/13 years of age, they would have less food and medicine. This is not all tribes But some of the larger ones in the NT are fucked, we cant help them and let them maintain their traditions at the same time, they are too conflicting with the modern world. Plus the area is too remote and too unpopulated, it is not feasible.

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