What does reconciliation mean to you?
For me personally reconciliation is about the acknowledgement about truth, being straight up about the two hundred and thirty one years that have passed since white Australians came here and changed the reality of Indigenous Australians whole world forever more. Acknowledging that there have been mistakes made.
What are some of the issues involved?
In the early days it was really a total disregard for not only Indigenous culture but for the natural habitat of Australia. As generations moved on some of the mistakes that were made were by people who assumed they had the best of intentions in mind and still made disastrous mistakes. It’s ten years now since the land mark report about the stolen generation. It’s early days still in terms of healing and discussion, story telling. It’s issue upon issue banked up for many many generations now and I guess it’s the beginning of bringing those horrors to light (pause) talking about them, talking about problems that white Australians have had with Indigenous Australians that have imposed upon them but also about the complicated problems within the Indigenous community itself. Forgiving white Australians for just not being careful, sensitive enough, thoughtful enough or caring or sensitive enough and not giving space to those problems, expecting them to go away without full acknowledgement.
What can we do?
I think areas of focus should be in just allowing and helping Indigenous communities finding their own solutions for the problems that at times have plagued them or are currently plaguing them. I think being sensitive and being supportive, asking what we can do, listening to those answers rather than imposing our ideas of what needs to be fixed, acknowledging that there are some serious problems that need immediate addressing and having full faith that that’s being acknowledged within the Indigenous culture.
Hello I’m Clare Bowditch, reconciliation it’s all our story join in the conversation.