Health problems; and Sexual orientation. These are just few examples of the aspects that can lead to discrimination. People tend to discriminate what they do not know or what looks different.
Their labour was often exploited. They were exposed to substandard living conditions and a poor and truncated education.
They were vulnerable to brutality and abuse. Many experienced repeated sexual abuse. The social environment for all Indigenous Australians and the physical environment for many remain unacceptable. It is pervaded by racial intolerance and a failure to deliver adequate or appropriate basic services from housing and infrastructure to education and hospital care.
Ill-health, poverty and unemployment are worse than third world levels. This makes it almost impossible to pinpoint family separations as the sole cause of some of the emotional issues by which Indigenous people are now troubled Professor Ernest Hunter evidence 61, Michael Constable evidence However, childhood removal is a very significant cause both in its distinctive horror and in its capacity to break down resilience and render its victims perpetually vulnerable.
Evidence to the Inquiry establishes clearly that the childhood experience of forcible removal and institutionalisation or multiple fostering makes those people much more likely to suffer emotional distress than others in the Indigenous community.
The psychiatric report concerning one witness to the Inquiry illustrates the persistence of vulnerability. She remembers him coming to visit her on occasions and being devastated when he had to leave. She also remembers being sexually abused by the wife of the Superintendent at Colebrook, on several occasions, giving rise to a distrust of so-called caregivers, especially females While she was still at school, she worked as a housekeeper for a local Minister and alleges that during this time, he regularly and deliberately exposed himself to her.
Not having anyone to turn to, this was a confusing and frightening experience. This man raped her but she did not feel able to tell anyone as she felt profoundly ashamed and frightened.
She was fifteen years old at the time. After this she was placed at Resthaven Nursing Home, which she believes was a strategy to get rid of her. Ms S developed problems with depression and alcohol abuse following the death of her father in Hospitalised for the first time Her substance abuse was the result of the difficulty she experienced coming to terms with the diagnosis of manic-depressive disorder, her significant family problems and the effects of a childhood where she was dislocated from her family of origin, thus leaving her vulnerable to the events which followed document provided with confidential evidenceSouth Australia.
In the WA Aboriginal Legal Service sample of people who had been forcibly removed, almost two-thirds Children were more likely to have been physically abused on missions Witnesses to the Inquiry were not specifically asked whether they had experienced physical abuse.
Stories of sexual exploitation and abuse were common in evidence to the Inquiry. Nationally at least one in every six A similar proportion These vulnerable children had no-one to turn to for protection or comfort.
They were rarely believed if they disclosed the abuse. There are many well recognised psychological impacts of childhood sexual abuse Finkelhor and Brown They include confusion about sexual identity and sexual norms, confusion of sex with love and aversion to sex or intimacy.
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REPORT OF THE BRITISH GUIANA COMMISSION OF INQUIRY Constituted by the International Commission of Jurists, October - RACIAL PROBLEMS IN THE PUBLIC SERVICE.
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