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National Sorry Day 2024

National Sorry Day | 26 May 2024

Every year, on 26th May, National Sorry Day (also known as National Day of Healing) is held in Australia to remember the mistreatment of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples.

On this day, we commemorate Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people who were forcibly removed from their families under government policies during the Assimilation era, officially 1910 to the 1970s.  They were separated from their families and from country, kinship, and culture.  These taken children have come to be known as the Stolen Generations.

On this date in 1997, the Bringing Them Home report was first tabled in Parliament.  Bringing Them Home was the name given to the final report of the National Inquiry into the Separation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children from Their Families conducted by the Australian Human Rights Commission.

This report detailed the hardships endured by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples and made 54 recommendations to redress the impacts of the removal polices and address ongoing trauma. The recommendations included a national Apology, reparations, improved services for Stolen Generations members and a process for monitoring the implementation of the report’s recommendations.

Two decades on and the Bringing Them Home report remains just as relevant because many of the recommendations are still outstanding.  This has caused additional distress for many Stolen Generations members and there has been a ripple effect to current generations.

National Sorry Day is a day of remembrance and commemoration.  It exists to give all Australians a chance to reflect upon the mistakes of the past and dedicate themselves to the great task of reconciliation; we can all play a part in the healing process for the people and nation.

We extend our respect to the Stolen Generations, and we acknowledge the strength and resilience of survivors, the ongoing grief and loss experienced by many individuals and families, and we recognise the pain and intergenerational trauma that continues.




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