The Forgotten Australians

Can you put a price on a childhood? The federal government did: after the apology it set aside $26.5 million in the 2011 budget. That’s $53 per person for the half million affected. That money has gone to a national oral history project, an exhibition coming to Sydney this year and a hotline for “streamlined” access to government services. The NSW government set up Wattle House, a drop-in counselling facility in Harris Park. The input of Forgotten Australians was sought into the colour of the walls. Counsellors, historians, bureaucrats, lawyers and tradesmen got paid; the victims didn’t.  The Forgotten Australians are getting older, with the looming spectre of institutional aged care causing many deep and renewed anxieties about their future. The time to do the right thing by these people is running out. For full story, click here.