Sorry Day at Jagera Hall in Musgrave Park

Brisbane Community Elders, ANTar and the Musgrave Park Cultural Centre in Brisbane put on a great day to celebrate the apology to the Stolen Generations yesterday (13 February 2008).

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Over 500 people crowded inside and outside Jagera Hall to celebrate the apology given by the Federal Parliament to the Stolen Generations. People from as far away as Cuba were at Jagera yesterday to witness this defining moment in the history of our community, made more significant because of the Howard government’s refusal to say ‘Sorry’.

Members of the Stolen Generations and their relatives spoke out about the sadness and grief they had been put through when taken away.

Mike Reynolds, the speaker of the Queensland parliament, endorsed the apology along with Helen Abrahams – Councillor for Dutton Park ward on Brisbane’s inner southside. Helen Abrahams promised to hand over control of local arts and community projects to the Murri community.

One young brother spoke strongly saying that it was important for Blacks to Unite first and then to bring in the White people.

Thanks to Natalie (Director of Musgrave Park Cultural Centre), Monique (ANTar), and eleders Aunty Joan and Aunty Valda, Uncle Huey (especially for his gum leaf renditions of Advance Australia Where) and the dancers. The food and drinks provided were plentiful and delicious.

The SORRY mural signed with the Black and White hands was beautiful (see pictures below). BushTelegraph includes a few of the photos taken yesterday to share the the experience with others who could not be there (thanks to Marcial for the photos).

A screen had been set up to show Rudd’s apology speech. Rudd’s speech was not even played, it was lost in the speeches of the stolen ones and community celebrations.

In the end, Howard’s refusal to give an apology and Rudd’s subsequent apology played second fiddle to a display of Murri determination and community solidarity displayed on Sorry day at Jagera Hall in Musgrave Park.

Hopefully the organisation that was shown yesterday will remain strong for the struggles ahead.

Ian Curr
14 February 2008

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Uncle Huey, a Burragubba elder welcomes the people to Sorry Day at Jagera Hall in Musgrave Park on 13 February 2008.

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Dancers perform a fire ceremony and welcome for the crowd

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Mike Reynolds, speaker of the Queensland Parliament ‘signs’ the Reconciliation banner (above)

Murri Elders (including Aunty Joan and Aunty Valda, and Uncle Huey) place their hands on the reconciliation mural.

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2 thoughts on “Sorry Day at Jagera Hall in Musgrave Park

  1. Ruby Hunter memorial says:

    On Wednesday 17th February 2010, acclaimed Ngarrindjeri, Pitjantjarra, Kookatha singer and songwriter RUBY HUNTER, passed away in the arms of her lifelong partner Archie Roach.

    Link-Up (Qld) Aboriginal Corporation would like to honour the life of RUBY HUNTER

    We invite you to join us this Friday 26th Feb at 1.00 pm at the Commemorative Plaque Site Orleigh Park Hill End Terrace West End to hold a memorial gathering

  2. Vale Ruby Hunter says:

    Sad to hear of Ruby Hunter’s death, just a few days after Sorry Day.

    She was still so young (b 1955).

    I have heard her sing many times and listened to Ruby tell her life story at the ‘Dreaming Festival’ in Woodford just a few years ago.

    Ian Curr
    Feb 2010

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wPvG-gD3h-w]

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