Reports and Stories of the Forgotten Australians throughout the 19th and 20th centuries.
K Rudd ex PM delivering National apology to the Forgotten Australians and Child Migrants

"...They should be honoured for their experience and given every support they need in order to participate fully in the community of which they are part..."

Speech Senator Gary Humphries on the Forgotten Australians Inquiry.



This image dedicated to all those abused whilst under Institutional care.
This image dedicated to all those abused whilst under Institutional care.

Forgotten Australians are generally  aged from 40 Years of age and upwards . They are the survivors of the 500,000 children placed in institutional or other out-of-home care in the last Century. All these children (now Adults) suffer from abandonment and Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) from years of neglect and abuse.

Punishments for very small offenses or perceived disobedience was harsh and cruel – severe physical attacks and beatings were reported by many.

Children were locked in cupboards or a cell in solitary confinement or made to stand for many hours in one position. Bed-wetting was punished with beatings, cold showers and humiliations, e.g. parading naked past others. Sexual abuse was also part of the norm from the carers themselves as well as visitors and sometimes from older children.

Andrew Maurray Speech Sept. 2008 : ‘The Forgotten Australians: Identity, records and their search for the past’.

Why forgotten? Because they were; and in significant respects, still are.

Historically there has been more academic and serious attention to the history of institutionalised indigenous Australians than to others who were institutionalised, but even so it has been limited.

Until relatively recently the written social history of Australia was remarkably sparse concerning the huge category of people that will be the subject of this address. This history is still hardly ever taught.

The lack of past serious and academic analysis of this social history reflected a wider prevailing attitude; an official and community view that children in care were not of much significance or interest overall.

This attitude was reinforced by Forgotten Australians themselves, many of whom were ashamed of having been in care and kept their childhood to themselves. more of Andrew Murray's speech here


On 20 June 2000, on the motion of Senator Andrew Murray, the Senate referred the issue of child migration to the Australian Senate’s Community Affairs References Committee for inquiry and report.

There are many organisations around the country, advocating against child abuse and many of these listed organisations have Forgotten Australians as supporters for their cause as well as members.i

Forgotten Australians in many ways lifted the lid on the various institutions and foster carers who were exploiting children. Never before these inquiries, has there been so many organisations putting their hands up and advocating against child abuse.

The problem with many of these organisations is the enormous amount of funding they get. What many of us don’t know is after all their expenses, the people the funding is intended for will only see 3% of the total funding if they even see that at all.

So many organisations helping the unfortunate, those unfortunate are the creators of CEO’s, NCO’s, Managers, Asst Managers, Case Mngrs, field mngrs, mentors all their to help those who are in need.

One organisation for the 2014-2015 financial balance sheet with a total balance to the beginning of the year of over $1,000,000, not even 3% of their total funding went towards the Forgotten Australians, these figures are not out of the air they are directly from the financial balance sheet for that period.

So who is helping who, we see many volunteers on the steps of parliament outside various government organisations screaming for justice, the problem we really have is those being funded are not directing the funding where they should be going.



It is not just the impact that tragic childhood experiences have had for the Forgotten Australians. Their children and families have also felt the impact, which can then flow through to future generations.