Australia to make reparations for 'stolen generation'

Sydney (AFP) –


Australia's Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced Thursday one-off payments to many Indigenous Australians who were forcibly removed from their homes as children.

The federal government redress scheme is part of a Aus$1 billion (US$740 million) plan to reduce the sharp disadvantages faced by Indigenous Australians.

Thousands of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander youths were taken from their homes and put in foster care with white families under official assimilation policies that persisted into the 1970s.

"What happened is a shameful chapter in our national story," Morrison told parliament of the "Stolen Generation" of Indigenous Australians.

The prime minister said 378.6 million dollars would be allocated to redress the human damage of the policy, including one-off payments for its victims.

It applies to Indigenous Australians living in former Commonwealth territories -- the Northern Territory, the Australian Capital Territory that is home to the capital Canberra, and Jervis Bay. Other Australian states have set up redress schemes.