Dear GMAR members, allies and supporters,
I hope the new year finds you in good spirits and looking forward to the inspiring protest action on the horizon. Please find below details for the next major mobilisation against ongoing Stolen Generations on 13 February, marking the seven year anniversary of the national apology. With growing international attention on this issue and incredible momentum at the grass-roots level with the formation of local GMAR groups far and wide, it is important to make this protest a big one! Spread the word and organise a convoy! Donate to GMAR and assist families from remote and regional areas to travel to Canberra. Stop Ongoing Stolen Generations, Aboriginal Community Control of Aboriginal Welfare!
+61 401 955 405
National Protest in Canberra – Join our fight against ongoing Stolen Generations!
13 February 2015
Marking the 7th anniversary of the Apology
12 noon – rally at Aboriginal Tent Embassy
March to Parliament House
Grandmothers Against Removals in NSW (GMAR), is participating in a mobilisation called by the National Aboriginal Strategic Alliance to Bring the Children Home (NASA). We will join people from across the country to protest against the continuing mass removal of Aboriginal children from their families.
The protest will take place on the 7th anniversary of Kevin Rudd’s apology to the Stolen Generations – sorry means you don’t do it again!
Please find attached and below promotional material with information about the current crisis of child removal and how you can get involved.
2014 has been an inspiring year, with the emergence of a grass-roots campaign led by parents and grand-parents who have experienced the tragedy of forced removal first hand.
This campaign has broken the national silence, helped numerous children come home to their families and forced negotiations with the child protection department in NSW about self-determination in Aboriginal child welfare.
Trade unions have passed motions of support for the campaign including the Public Service Association NSW (representing child protection workers) and the Public Health Association Australia. In October 2014, the Federal Senate passed motions in support of the campaign which stated, “we all must do all in our power to stop the development of a new Stolen Generation”.
2015 will be the year when we build a critical mass and push for the systemic change that is so urgently needed – starting with a big rally on February 13!
How you can help:
- Please donate to the Grandmothers Against Removals account to help fund affected families to join the protest. Bendigo Bank | BSB 633-000 | Account number 153568613
- Spread the word on social media. Talk about the protest with your family and friends and get a group together who will travel to Canberra. Share this email through your networks.
- Raise support for the protest with your Land Council or community organisation. We need donations, but also assistance with promotion, buses for delegations and initiative from local communities to make this rally a success.
• More Aboriginal children are being forcibly removed by child welfare agencies now than ever before in Australia’s history!
• Almost 14000 Indigenous children are in out-of-home care nation-wide.
• Almost six percent of the national Indigenous child population has been forcibly removed, more than ten times the non-Indigenous rate.
• In NSW, one in ten Aboriginal children have been taken from their families.
• The Bringing Them Home Report (1997) found that racism and assimilationism in child protection was still a primary cause of many forced child removals. Since 1997, the numbers of children being “stolen” has increased five-fold
OUR STORY – GRANDMOTHERS AGAINST REMOVALS NSW
￼“We demand Aboriginal community control over all decisions affecting the welfare of our children and families”
“I started the Grandmothers Against Removals group in NSW to get the message out there that DOCS are stealing our kids and we have rights! Most importantly our little children have rights to stay in community with family!”
Aunty Hazel, founding member of GMAR NSW
“I worked for DOCS for over 13 years and I quit my job this year because they are still pushing an agenda of assimilation. We have to fight against this because we do parent our kids differently and we have a right to live our cultural way”
Aunty Debra Swan, former DOCS caseworker
“Too many Aboriginal children are being removed not just from their families but from their traditional Country too. The Stolen Generations is not a thing of the past. It is happening today”
Greens MLC David Shoebridge
in Speech to NSW Parliament 9/12/14
OUR MOVEMENT – NATIONAL ABORIGINAL STRATEGIC ALLIANCE TO BRING THE CHILDREN HOME (NASA)
“We have formed a national network to build the grass-roots people’s movement to stop the ongoing Stolen Generations and fight the systemic disadvantage facing our people”
NASA statement, May 26.
“We are calling now on all Aboriginal organisations and all workers and institutions involved with the wellbeing of Aboriginal children to take a side in this struggle – will you support mass removal of Aboriginal children continuing? Or will you work with us to demand children are kept safe within their family and culture”
NASA statement, August 4.
“On February 13 next year, 7 years since Kevin Rudd’s “apology”, we will lead a national protest in Canberra demanding an end to continuing Stolen Generation and continuing impoverishment of Aboriginal people”
NASA statement, August 4.
NSW: 0401 955 405
QU : 0407 687 016
WA: 0475 790 046
NT: 0438 816 851
Media Enquiries: 0401 955 405