AUSTRALIA'S PRIME MINISTER KEVIN
APOLOGIZES TO AUSTRALIA'S INDIGENOUS
The Stolen Generation
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It follows the full text transcript of
Kevin Rudd's The Stolen Generation speech, delivered
at the Parliament of Australia, the House of
Representatives, Canberra, Australia - February 13, 2008.
That today we
honor the Indigenous peoples of this land, the
oldest continuing cultures in human history.
We reflect on
their past mistreatment.
We reflect in
particular on the mistreatment of those who were
Stolen Generations - this blemished chapter in
our nation's history.
The time has now
come for the nation to turn a new page in
Australia's history by righting the wrongs of
the past and so moving forward with confidence
to the future.
We apologize for
the laws and policies of successive Parliaments
and governments that have inflicted profound
grief, suffering and loss on these our fellow
especially for the removal of Aboriginal and
Torres Strait Islander children from their
families, their communities and their country.
For the pain,
suffering and hurt of these Stolen Generations,
their descendants and for their families left
behind, we say sorry.
To the mothers and
the fathers, the brothers and the sisters, for
the breaking up of families and communities, we
And for the
indignity and degradation thus inflicted on a
proud people and a proud culture, we say sorry.
We the Parliament
of Australia respectfully request that this
apology be received in the spirit in which it is
offered as part of the healing of the nation.
For the future we
take heart; resolving that this new page in the
history of our great continent can now be
We today take this
first step by acknowledging the past and laying
claim to a future that embraces all Australians.
A future where
this Parliament resolves that the injustices of
the past must never, never happen again.
A future where we
harness the determination of all Australians,
Indigenous and non-Indigenous, to close the gap
that lies between us in life expectancy,
educational achievement and economic
A future where we
embrace the possibility of new solutions to
enduring problems where old approaches have
A future based on
mutual respect, mutual resolve and mutual
A future where all
Australians, whatever their origins, are truly
equal partners, with equal opportunities and
with an equal stake in shaping the next chapter
in the history of this great country, Australia.