8.30pm, Tuesday 19 April on SBS
National figures suggest Indigenous children are being removed from their parents at a rate greater than any other time in recorded Australian history.
This week, Insight puts them front and centre to have their say.
There are more than 15,000 Indigenous kids in out-of-home care, and they are almost 10 times more likely to be in care than non-indigenous children. Some claim we’re at risk of repeating the experience of the Stolen Generations.
Others say that comparison isn’t useful, and that the traumatic history has meant Aboriginal kids are too often being left in harm’s way out of fear of claims of racism.
Indigenous children are seven times more likely to be the subject of substantiated reports of abuse or neglect. Legally, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander kids are to be placed in order of preference with extended family, the child’s own Indigenous community or other Indigenous people.
But as of June 2014, about a third of Aboriginal kids in care across the country were not placed with Aboriginal carers (with even higher rates in the Northern Territory and Tasmania).
In this rare discussion, young Aboriginal adults who’ve been through care, share their experiences with Insight and explain what they would’ve liked growing up, as well as what they want for their own kids.
“If you want your children to come and live with you, you need to step up your game and you need to start taking responsibility.”
“I’ve pretty much stayed in the family and I’ve known all my family my whole life, my whole culture. I love all of it.”
“When I’m stable enough and I’m ready enough, that I can look after kids and keep my kids, that’s when I know I’ll have kids”.
“We worked like slaves, we got hidings, we were abused, we had to call them Mum and Dad. They were missionaries. I ran away at the age of 15 because I had enough of everything.”
“Maybe if my Mum didn’t live amongst all family and maybe if she would have moved out, just made a better future for her kids, it would have been alright.”