One of the reasons given for the dismantling of ATSIC was because the federal government claimed that it was mismanaging its funds. The clear implication was that Aborigines couldn’t be trusted to administer government money.
Many white Australians would have agreed with the government’s decision. But how many Aussies know that for a century Australian Aborigines were robbed blind of all their rightful wages by state governments and bureaucrats who were charged morally and in law to protect their earnings. Dr Rosalind Kidd, an expert witness in the Palm Island wages case, turns the tables on white Australian governments in this devastating book. She brings a legal perspective to the realities of history. There has been a Royal commission into the stolen Children, but none so far into the Stolen Wages.
Aborigines, it was determined by the ‘Protectors’, those appointed to ensure their welfare, couldn’t look after themselves or their funds, so a lifetime’s wages and entitlements were taken by governments and bureaucrats, never to be accounted for or returned.
It is a scandal of breathtaking proportions. Kidd is to be congratulated for demanding that our governments must be held to the same depth of accountability as they would demand of any financial institution taking and dealing with public funds.