Reparations

The Queensland Government announced a $21 million fund to make reparations payments to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples whose wages and savings were controlled under the 'Protection Acts'.

The Queensland Government appointed a Stolen Wages Reparations Taskforce to make recommendations about distribution of these funds. The taskforce's recommendations report was released on 26 May 2016. Key recommendations included using remaining Aborigines' Welfare Fund monies for acts of reconciliation, such as:

  • dedicated memorials recognising the contribution of stolen wages which were used to develop the state’s infrastructure
  • scholarships to document the history of stolen wages in Queensland from the perspective of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

Queensland Stolen Wages Reparations Taskforce Report: Reconciling Past Injustice is available on the reparations website.

Queensland Government's response to the recommendations

On the same day, 26 May 2016, the Queensland Government released their response to the taskforce recommendations report (PDF, 1.5 MB). A key recommendation of the Queensland Government's report was to close the Aborigines Welfare Fund, as a gesture of reconciliation to finalise this chapter of Queensland's history. 

The report also confirmed the Queensland Government’s intention to publically acknowledge the financial contribution of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples towards the development of key Queensland infrastructure. This public acknowledgement will include monuments, plaques and other lasting forms of appropriate public acknowledgement, to highlight the use of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Queenslanders’ stolen wages in helping to build this state.

The Queensland Government has also agreed to other taskforce recommendations, including:

  • establishing a Reparations Review Panel to enable consideration of previously ineligible applications, to ensure as many Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Queenslanders as possible have access to the Reparation Scheme, to seek justice for past wrongs
  • funding scholarships for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples to document the experiences and perspectives of government control of wages and savings under the ‘Protections Acts’, for their respective cultures.

Read a copy of the Queensland Government's Response to the Taskforce Recommendations Report (PDF, 1.5 MB).

 Tell us your story

Every story—no matter how big or small—is worth sharing!

 Gallery of stories

Read stories from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Queenslanders who worked under the 'Protection Acts'.

 Make an application

If you believe your wages or savings were controlled under the ‘Protection Acts’ and you were born during the eligibility period, you may be entitled to a make a claim. Applications close on 29 September 2017.

 

Is your feedback

Please submit your comments on the department's Compliments and Complaints section.

Please submit your comments on the Queensland Government website Contacts form.