Another stolen generation, another apology? Vickie Janson
As Leigh Hubbard, Chairman of Vanish said, this is a momentous week for some Victorians. The Victorian Premier and other political leaders have delivered a powerful apology in recognition of the damage to many lives from forced adoptions. This is another sorry story where all too late the significance of children effectively stolen from their natural mother has been recognised.
This is a timely reminder of the traumatizing impact not just on mums, but also on children even when they are placed in loving homes. According to an Australian Institute of Family Studies report in August 2012, 70% of the 800 adopted persons surveyed identified a higher level of mental health issues than the general population and were generally over-represented in the statistics of substance abuse, depression and relationship breakdowns. Vanish has already set up support groups for young donor-conceived people who suffer the same issues of separation and identity as the traditional adoption generations.
With the debate about same-sex marriage still simmering in the nation, one has to wonder why the ‘right to have a child’ continually trumps the right of a child to a mum and a dad. Despite all the evidence pointing to the importance of natural family, the devastating impact on young lives of marital breakdown, and the identity issues with adoption and donor conception that go to the heart of our humanity, the push to commodify children and willfully deny them this natural habitat continues. Perhaps in a few more years we will have another inquiry and apology to yet another struggling stolen generation; or will we learn our lesson?