Experiences of the stolen generation
Edited from the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission Bringing them Home - The Report
The overwhelming majority of the children forcibly removed under assimilationist legislation and policies were separated from their Indigenous family, community and culture. 1) They were not permitted to use their languages.
Y'know, I can remember we used to just talk lingo. [In the Home] they used to tell us not to talk that language, that it's devil's language. And they'd wash our mouths with soap. We sorta had to sit down with Bible language all the time. So it sorta wiped out all our language that we knew. Confidential evidence 170, South Australia: woman taken from her parents with her 3 sisters when the family, who worked and resided on a pastoral station, came into town to collect stores; placed at Umewarra Mission.
2) Children were given the very strong impression their parents were worthless
`Your family don't care about you anymore, they wouldn't have given you away. They don't love you. All they are, are just dirty, drunken blacks.' You heard this daily ... When I come out of the home and come to Redfern here looking for the girls, you see a Koori bloke coming towards you, you cross the street, you run for your life, you're terrified. Confidential evidence 8, New South Wales: woman removed to Cootamundra Girls' Home in the 1940s. 3) In an attempt to force `white ways' upon the children and to ensure they did not return to `the camp' on their release, Aboriginality was denigrated and Aboriginal people were held in open contempt. This denigration was among the most common experiences of witnesses to the Inquiry. All the teachings that we received from our (foster) family when we were little, that black people were bad ... I wanted my skin to be white. Confidential evidence 132, Victoria: woman fostered at 10 years in the 1960s. 4) What education was provided generally aimed at completion of their...
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