Flags at Randwick’s Town Hall will fly at half-mast on Thursday to mark National Sorry Day after councillors observed a minute’s silence at a meeting this week to acknowledge the grief, trauma and loss that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities continue to experience from the Stolen Generations period.
In the background to a mayoral minute tabled at Tuesday’s council meeting, Randwick mayor Dylan Parker said that he “feel[s] proud to participate in Sorry Day and restate our Nation’s apology to the Stolen Generations.”
National Sorry Day has been held on May 26 every year since 1998, one year after the ‘Bringing Them Home’ report into the forcible removal of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children from their communities was tabled in Australian parliament.
The report, which came as the result of a government inquiry, found that between one in three and one in ten Indigenous children were forcibly removed from their communities between 1910 and 1970, and that most families have been affected, in at least one generation, by the forcible removal of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children.
Randwick to display Uluru Statement from the Heart posters for National Sorry Day
According to Reconciliation Australia, National Sorry Day serves to “acknowledge the strength of Stolen Generations Survivors and reflect on how we can all play a part in the healing process for our people and nation.”
In February 2008, then prime minister Kevin Rudd issued a formal apology to the Stolen Generations. Current prime minister Anthony Albanese, who returned Labor to government this month after nine years in opposition, committed to the Uluru Statement from the Heart in full during his victory speech on Saturday, which if inserted, would see constitutional and structural reforms to improve Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander lives.
In addition to the flags flying at half-mast at Town Hall, council will also display posters of the Uluru Statement from the Heart across Randwick.