Aboriginal Legal Service of Western Australia Limited

Telling our Story

In 1995 this was the first public research report of its kind undertaken in Western Australia. It documents an extraordinary chapter in the history of Aboriginal affairs examining the effect of government policies that saw thousands of Aboriginal children removed from their families and reared in missions, orphanages, reserves and white foster homes.

This book is available for Download.

In 1995 this was the first public research report of its kind undertaken in Western Australia. It documents an extraordinary chapter in the history of Aboriginal affairs examining the effect of government policies that saw thousands of Aboriginal children removed from their families and reared in missions, orphanages, reserves and white foster homes.

“The report documents the insensitive, callous and now discredited policies of assimilation and integration. It confirms a significant manifestation between removal from family and severe psychological, social and economic problems experienced by many Aboriginal people later in life” Rob Riley, CEO ALS 1990-1995

More than 600 Aboriginal people who were personally and directly affected by successive assimilationist policies of Western Australian governments have told their stories publicly for the first time after a lifetime of pain and suffering.

The report cites a range of legal options for Aboriginal people who were taken away and are seeking reparation.

This includes:

  • alleging a breach in the international laws of genocide
  • alleging a breach of implied human rights in the Australian Constitution, or
  • there are several civil law options

The report also makes recommendations to both State and Federal Governments of ways of addressing this most important issue.

The book Telling Our Story is available for download here:

Telling Our Story (8.12 Mb)

Contact ALSWA

1800 019 900
ALSWA Freecall from anywhere in WA.

7 Aberdeen Street
Perth WA 6000
(near McIver Train Station)

Phone: +61 8 9265 6666
Fax: +61 8 9221 1767
URGENT AFTER HOURS Criminal Matter:
08 9265 6644
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ALSWA Services

ALSWA provides legal advice and representation for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in WA in Criminal, Family, Civil and Human Rights Law with additional services in community legal education, advocacy and the protection and promotion of human rights .

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