Media Release: Thursday, 14 February, 2008

The Australian Christian Lobby (ACL) today welcomed the parliamentary apology to the Stolen Generations and expressed the hope that it would facilitate a process of genuine healing for Australia’s indigenous people.

“This has been an historic day for Australia. The Federal Government and Opposition should be congratulated for joining on a bi-partisan basis to make an apology of such significance and meaning,” ACL Managing Director Jim Wallace said today.

“Saying sorry is a necessary part of forgiveness and healing. Today’s parliamentary apology provides the opportunity for a real restoration of relationship and a stronger platform on which practical measures can be taken to assist indigenous Australians.”

Under the policies which led to the Stolen Generations, large numbers of mixed race children were systematically removed from their families between 1910 and 1970.

“ACL believes it is right and fitting for our Federal Parliament to say sorry for the dislocation, sadness and family breakdown that these policies caused to indigenous families and communities, the effects of which are still being felt today,” Mr Wallace said.

“It is good to see that the apology has avoided excuses and recognised the deep and very real pain caused as a result of these actions.”

Media Contact: Glynis Quinlan