Stolen generations

Cunneen, Chris (2010) Stolen generations. In: Mann, Trischa, (ed.) Australian Law Dictionary. Oxford University Press, Melbourne, VIC.

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Abstract

Stolen Generations The Indigenous children forcibly removed from their families, primarily during the period of 'protection' legislation (c. 1890-1970). The National Inquiry into the Separation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children from Their Families (also known as the Stolen Generations Inquiry) found that approximately 10% of Indigenous children were removed during this period. The Inquiry also outlined the numerous harms caused to children, families and communities as a result of removals. One contentious issue is whether the policies of forced removal constituted GENOCIDE under INTERNATIONAL LAW.

Various avenues for redress of wrongs committed by the states and the Commonwealth have been explored in LITIGATION, with CAUSES OF ACTION framed in NEGLIGENCE, breach of FIDUCIARY duty or statutory duty, wrongful imprisonment or breach of constitutional rights. Most claims have failed, although a successful claim of MISFEASANCE in public office and FALSE IMPRISONMENT resulted in an award of$525,000 in damages in Trevorrow v South Australia (No.5) (2007) 98 SASR 136, and some criminal compensation claims have been successful. In a celebrated case under the Victims Support and Rehabilitation Act 1996 (NSW) the Victims Compensation Tribunal (NSW), in an unreported appeal from Determination No. 73123 of 2002 which dismissed the claim, awarded $35,000 to a woman for sexual assaults that occurred during the late 1950s.

Tasmania is the only jurisdiction to have introduced a compensation scheme. The Stolen Generations of Aboriginal Children Act 2006 (Tas) provides for ex gratia payments for Stolen Generations members. Prime Minister Rudd has formally apologised to the Stolen Generations (see APOLOGY). See also BRINGING THEM HOME REPORT.

Item ID: 16279
Item Type: Book Chapter (Reference)
ISBN: 978-0-19-969144-9
Date Deposited: 09 May 2011 00:06
FoR Codes: 18 LAW AND LEGAL STUDIES > 1801 Law > 180119 Law and Society @ 100%
SEO Codes: 94 LAW, POLITICS AND COMMUNITY SERVICES > 9404 Justice and the Law > 940403 Criminal Justice @ 100%
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