Human Rights and Neoliberal Wrongs in the Indigenous Child Welfare Space
May 2017 marked the 20th anniversary of Bringing Them Home, the Australian Human Rights Commission report into the forced and unjustified removals of Indigenous children from their families (NISATSIC 1997). The report concluded that these actions were part of a sustained campaign by the Australian government to eradicate Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families, communities, and culture. Nearly a third of the report examined and made recommendations with respect to contemporary removals under child welfare, juvenile justice, and family law. These recommendations were part of the reparations and were aimed at creating laws and policies designed to ensure the discriminatory practices would cease and would not be repeated. Twenty years post-Bringing Them Home, however, Indigenous children are being removed from their families in unprecedented numbers (Libesman 2016, pp. 46–7).
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