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We say sorry: 10 years since the apology to the Stolen Generations

Three women sitting down and one is crying

On the 10 year anniversary of former Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd’s apology to the Stolen Generation we are proud to share with you images that photographer, Wendy McDougall took of Sorry Day at Redfern Community Centre on 13 February 2008. These images capture the sorrow in the response of an audience listening to the Prime Minister apologise for past government policies that forcibly separated Aboriginal children from their families and communities.

The National Apology to the Stolen Generations was a momentous occasion in Australia’s history. It publicly recognised and accepted that tremendous harm has been done to Aboriginal people and communities all over Australia. Prime Minister Kevin Rudd apologised for the government’s role in separating families, leaving so many children isolated, dispossessed and with a legacy of abuse and torment. 

Wendy McDougall’s photographs show how emotional Sorry Day was for the community in Redfern. However, within these images there is also a sense of the resilience and the fighting spirit of Indigenous peoples and communities. Discover Wendy McDougall’s work in the Library’s catalogue.

Image of a man conducting a smoking ceremony