AceBreakingNews – New South Wales Aboriginal Affairs Minister David Harris says he is aware of an archaeological search conducted at one of Australia’s most notorious Aboriginal boys homes and is talking to survivors about the next steps.
Ace Press News From Cutting Room Floor: Published: Sept.07: 2023: ABC News Report:
WARNING: This story contains details that may be distressing for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander readers
In December 2021, the Murrumbidgee Archaeological Heritage Company was engaged by a group of Indigenous people who lived at the Kinchela Aboriginal Boys Training Home, near Kempsey on the state’s Mid North Coast, to conduct a search.
The home, which was run between 1924 and 1970, has a notorious history of abuse involving First Nations people.
A spokesperson for Mr Harris said a ground-penetrating radar search at the site had been completed.
The spokesperson said due to the highly sensitive nature of the findings, a report on the search was presented to the Kinchela Boys Home Aboriginal Corporation only.
Guardian Australia, which has seen the report, today claimed at least nine “suspicious” sites of possible graves had been identified by the archaeological experts.
The news outlet claimed the report highlighted “high priority anomalies” in the ground at the home, which showed “signal patterns that in other contexts have proven to be human burials”.
Federal Indigenous Affairs Minister Linda Burney has called for an investigation into the claims.
“Fifteen years after the apology to the Stolen Generations, we are still coming to grips with our history,” Ms Burnie said.
Report yet to be shared
Mr Harris’ spokesperson said the report was being considered by the Kinchela Boys Home survivors group, which would determine whether it would be shared with the local Aboriginal land council.
“At this stage, Aboriginal Affairs NSW understand [that] the Kempsey Aboriginal Land Council has not yet received the report, and Aboriginal Affairs NSW has not received permission from the organisation to release it to the land council,” the spokesperson said.
“The Minister has asked his department to make contact with the group to discuss their concerns, along with discussing next steps.”
The ABC contacted the Kinchela Boys Home Aboriginal Corporation, which said it was preparing a statement but declined to comment further.
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