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Wed Sep 19, 2012, 09:36 PM

NSW apologises for forced adoptions

New South Wales Premier Barry O'Farrell has delivered an apology over the policy of previous government to remove children from unwed mothers.


"It caused years of pain and grief for many, instead of the joy and delight of parenthood might reasonably be expected to bring," he said.

"Today in this, Australia's first parliament, we acknowledge the terrible wrongs that were done and with profound sadness and remorse say to those living with ongoing grief and pain, we are sorry."

Parents and children who were forcibly separated in hospitals and unwed mothers homes in the 1950s, 60s and 70s were present at the joint sitting of Parliament to hear the apology.


I'm old enough to remember the days when young girls would disappear from the community for a time, and everyone knew the reason, but it was never spoken aloud. These girls were made to feel like criminals, and now, as a mum myself, I can only imagine the dreadful trauma it caused. Even if it wasn't possible for a young girl to keep and raise her baby, there were much better and kinder ways of handling the situation than forcibly removing the babies at birth and treating the mothers as non-persons.

I don't really care for Mr O'Farrell's politics, but he's done the right thing.

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