“Stop more Stolen Generations, take back control of our lives” was the main theme of a rally and march held in Brisbane on May 2. About 50 Murris and supporters gathered at Roma Street Forum (Emma Miller Place) for a rally, then marched to the office of the Queensland Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services in George Street.
Rally publicity said: “13,433 Aboriginal kids were taken in Queensland last year. Child safety accidents = Deaths in Custody!” The protest followed a number of recent tragic cases of deaths or injuries of Aboriginal children, while in state care.
Rally chairperson Coco said a rise in the numbers of Aboriginal children being removed from their parents began in the 1990s. Then prime minister John Howard “disbanded the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission and the national Aboriginal childcare network. This meant the destruction of our Aboriginal community-controlled organisations.
“This has been replaced with state control, much of it managed by Black bureaucrats. It has now resulted in police with guns shooting our kids, and attacking our children.
“Our grannies and aunties want to take care of our children. We want responsibility given back to our communities.
”From July 1, the intervention goes into Woodridge, Inala and Logan City. The existing problems will escalate. Many more of our kids will be pinched.
“We want dialogue with the new Queensland minister and the bureaucrats. Our message: We want to solve our problems ourselves.”
Police prevented the protesters from entering the department building to deliver a petition to the director. The demonstrators then rallied outside the office for several hours, listening to several speakers.