Media Release by The Hon Jenny Macklin MP

Working Together Towards Reconciliation

Real progress on the path towards reconciliation took a step forward today with the first consultations to develop a national apology to the Stolen Generation.

The Minister for Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs, Ms Jenny Macklin MP met in Sydney with Professor Mick Dodson, co-Chair of Reconciliation Australia, Mr Tom Calma, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice Commissioner, representatives from the National Sorry Day Committee and the Stolen Generations Alliance.

“Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd has committed our Government to framing an apology in a consultative way with the Indigenous community, and today I am pleased to have started this consultation,” Ms Macklin said.

“A national apology is an important step in progressing reconciliation and fundamentally it is the right thing to do.

“The apology will be given force by the Australian Government’s commitment to ‘close the gap’ in life expectancy between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians.

“The purpose of saying sorry is to build a bridge and to establish respect so that together, the Government and the Indigenous community can move forward.

“The Australian Government is committed to addressing Indigenous disadvantage, and we want to do so with all Australians who wish to join a partnership built on respect, cooperation and evidence based policy,” Ms Macklin said.

Ms Macklin joined Mr Calma in Sydney to officially launch Us Taken-Away Kids, a magazine commemorating the 10th Anniversary of the Bringing them home report.