Aboriginal and Torres Strait residents who were taken from their families as children will receive compensation of A$75,000 (47,000 euros) per person. The Australian government has allocated a total of 237 million euros to compensate the victims. Nearly 25 years ago, a report was published urging the Australian government to provide reparations.
The victims belonged to the “Stolen Generations”. Nearly 100,000 children were taken from their families between 1910 and 1970 by the government, welfare organizations, and the church and placed with white families until they were assimilated. In 2008 the Australian government apologized for this. Funds were made available for assistance programs, but no compensation was provided.
Compensation is intended for victims who are still alive, and relatives are not eligible. Part of the compensation is that victims can confidentially tell their story to a government official. A personal apology can also be made to them in conversation or in writing.
The Australian Government is providing more funds to improve the position of Indigenous peoples in the community. The social and economic situation of many of them is poor. In total, this relates to A$1 billion. For example, $250 million will go to Indigenous health organizations and $75 million will be invested in secondary education in remote locations.
Similar practices have occurred in other countries. In Canada, in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, Aboriginal children were expelled en masse from their homes and sent to boarding schools. There they had to leave their language and culture behind. Mass graves of Aboriginal children have recently been discovered in many of these boarding schools.
The discoveries sparked outrage in Canada. The investigation is also underway in America. That country has a similar system of boarding schools for indigenous children.
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