On Thursday, 21 March 2013, the then Prime Minister Julia Gillard, for the Parliament, and on behalf of the Australian people, took responsibility and apologised for the policies and practices that forced the separation of mothers from their babies, which had created a lifelong legacy of pain and suffering. She acknowledged the profound effects of these policies and practices on fathers, and recognised the hurt these actions caused to brothers and sisters, grandparents, partners and extended family members.
On 21 March 2018, a special video message recorded by Julia Gillard AC in collaboration with the Forced Adoption Support Services, will be released to honour and observe the 5th anniversary of this apology.
Relationships Australia Victoria (RAV) and its Compass Forced Adoption Support Services, is also commemorating the National Apology through participation in a number of events.
The organisation will acknowledgement the anniversary through internal staff events at a number of centres.
The Compass team will visit the Cherished Mother and Daughter memorial in Sale in Victoria, which was launched in early 2017 on behalf of all mothers. The memorial is a place for acknowledging motherhood, and for the mothers and others to reflect and contemplate the precious and sacred relationship between mother and child.
RAV staff are also attending a commemorative event hosted by ARMS and VANISH, which will feature a keynote address from Adjunct Professor Nahum Mushin on National Apology for Forced Adoptions – Five Years On. Professor Mushin chaired the Australian Government’s Forced Adoption Implementation Working Group. For more information on this event, visit the ARMS or VANISH websites.
For more information or to learn about RAV’s Compass Forced Adoption Support Services, contact Lisa Stockheim, RAV's Compass Program Coordinator – Forced Adoption Support Services by calling (03) 9313 4407 or by email.
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