Adoption support group’s boycott
ONE of the state’s leading adoption support groups will not be in Parliament House on Thursday when Premier Barry O’Farrell officially apologises for the state’s role in forced adoptions.
Origins NSW co-ordinator Lily Arthur said last night that too much remained undone for the group to accept the apology.
“They’re trying to rush it through because there’s a federal apology planned for early next year,” Mrs Arthur said.
“There’s no sincerity in this and they’ve had far too long to show contrition but instead they have left people languishing in a state of hell.”
Mrs Arthur said some Origins members would probably attend as individuals but she was not going and the organisation would not be represented.
Lynne Williamson, of North Lambton, said she would join the Origins boycott of the event after initially deciding to go on Thursday.
“I was adopted, and then in 1972, as a young unmarried mother, I was forced to give up my child and denied the ability to hold him as the nun ordered the midwife to ‘take it away, it’s for adoption’,” Mrs Williamson said. “Personally, I hope the apology will lead to concrete results, but I cannot go.
“Our advocate support group still has not received funding, as was recommended in the first inquiry into forced adoptions 12 years ago.”
Hamilton South adoption activist Therese Pearson said she, too, had mixed feelings about going but had decided to attend.
“It doesn’t mean anything to me yet because I think they should have done all of the things that they have promised to do before they think they can say sorry,” Ms Pearson said.
“But I do want to see what they are going to say.”
In the lead-up to Thursday’s apology, the government said it would waive the $135 fee parents and adopted children had previously paid to access their personal records.
The government has also indicated it would be guided by a recent Senate inquiry into forced adoptions.
Lynne Williamson, of North Lambton, holding a copy of a photograph of her brother who was put up for adoption. – Picture: Peter Stoop