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Labor’s commitment to Reconciliation.

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The Hon Warren Snowdon MP Labor Member for Lingiari Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for Northern Australia Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for Reconciliation

Contacts: Warren Snowdon — 0419 626 601 Markus Mannheim — 0418 846 596

Wednesday, 15 September 2004

Labor’s commitment to Reconciliation

The Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for Reconciliation, Warren Snowdon, today welcomed the launch of Labor’s Indigenous Affairs policy, saying it reconfirmed the party’s longstanding commitment to Reconciliation.

“Reconciliation will be a major objective of a Latham Labor Government,” Mr Snowdon said.

“It is a critical element of Labor’s indigenous policy, as is the rebuilding of a national Indigenous representative body.

“In the spirit of Reconciliation, Labor in government will acknowledge Indigenous Australians as the original custodians of our land at the formal opening of each Parliament.

“Mark Latham as Prime Minister will apologise on behalf of the nation to the Stolen Generations.

“This will be a powerful recognition of past wrongs.

“It will also be backed up by an investigation of alternative ways to resolve legal claims resulting from children being taken from their families.

“The Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission will also be asked to review all of the government’s responses to its Bringing Them Home report into the Stolen Generations.

“A Labor Government will also commission a comprehensive independent review of the wages of Indigenous workers, which for many decades were confiscated by governments and placed into trust funds.

“Much of this money was permanently withheld or lost.

“The Howard Government has sought to eliminate Reconciliation from the national agenda.

“But Labor is committed to making it a central focus of the Indigenous Affairs portfolio.”