I invite all residents of Blacktown City to join with Council in supporting the Prime Minister Mr Kevin Rudd and the Members of the Federal Government in saying sorry to Australia's Indigenous peoples for the injustices of the past, particularly the Stolen Generation of children who were involuntarily removed from their families.
Blacktown City Council believes that the actions of the Federal Government with this historic statement is long overdue and is a very important step forward toward a real process of reconciliation.
Council acknowledges the Darug people who are the traditional owners of the land on which Blacktown is built.
Our City's links with our Indigenous people extend from as early as 1804, when the Native Institute was built by Governor Macquarie. The location was known as Blacks Town and over time, the City became formally known as Blacktown.
Blacktown was also where Australia's first Aboriginal property grants were made to two individuals whose names are represented in Blacktown City today, namely Nurragingy and Colebee. The site of one of these grants remains today, nearby to where the Native Institute was located in Richmond Road. It is interesting to note that 220 years after the first settlement, as a nation, we are still to fully reconcile with our Indigenous fellow Australians
Council applauds this important first step in acknowledging the wrongs perpetrated in the past against past Indigenous generations and in saying sorry for the actions that were taken at the time. Council is committed to assisting with the healing process for our Indigenous communities in Blacktown.
Let us all join together in looking to the future and to building a united and peaceful Nation where equality of opportunity is open to all people regardless of race.
Leo Kelly Mayor
13 February 2008
Read the full national apology to the Stolen Generation.pdf