Media Release by The Hon Julie Collins MP

Public invited to join Past Forced Adoptions working group

The Minister for Community Services, Julie Collins, today called for expressions of interest from people who want to be part of a working group to help support those who have been affected by past forced adoption practices.

“We want to deliver the best possible support for those impacted by these practices, and by inviting members of the public to get involved and contribute their ideas and viewpoints, we know we can deliver better, more informed support,” Ms Collins said.

The establishment of the Past Forced Adoptions Implementation Working Group follows Prime Minister Julia Gillard’s National Apology for Forced Adoptions on 21 March 2013.

The Government’s response to the recommendations of the Senate Inquiry Report into Former Forced Adoption Policies and Practices formed part of the national apology and includes the establishment of a forum for mothers, fathers, adult adoptees and others who have been affected to provide advice to Government about how best to meet the needs of those affected.

“The Working Group, to be chaired by Adjunct Professor Nahum Mushin, will help us deliver on our commitment to provide better support for Australians impacted by past forced adoption practices,” Ms Collins said.

The Gillard Government has also invested $11.5 million over the next four years in a number of related initiatives:

  • $5 million to improve access to specialist support services, peer and professional counselling and support records tracing for those affected by forced adoptions.
  • $5 million to develop guidelines and training materials to increase awareness of the issues relating to past forced adoptions among health professionals.
  • $1.5 million to develop a website and exhibition by the National Archives of Australia to record the experiences of those affected by forced adoption and increase awareness and understanding of these experiences in the community.

“Together with the national apology, these measures will deliver better support for people affected by past forced adoption policies and practices,” Ms Collins said.

The invitation to submit an Expression of Interest for membership of the Past Forced Adoptions Implementation Working Group is available at

Submissions close at 5pm on 10 June 2013.

For more information, email