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Principles for nationally consistent approaches to accessing Stolen Generations records

Joint statement by Australian Information Access Commissioners and Privacy Authorities

Information Access and Privacy regulators from across Australia have issued a joint statement to mark National Sorry Day (26 May).

Australian Information Access Commissioners and Privacy Authorities recognise the important role of historical records in truth telling and sharing history, intergenerational healing, redress and reparations for Stolen Generation survivors and their families.

The Healing Foundation’s Principles for nationally consistent approaches to accessing Stolen Generations records will inform ongoing discussions about greater national consistency.

We acknowledge that the Principles support implementation of recommendations about access to records from the Bringing Them Home (1997) and Make Healing Happen: It’s time to act (2021) reports.

We are committed to working together with The Healing Foundation and stakeholders to champion timely, easy access to records through informal access schemes wherever possible, with formal access applications required only as a last resort.


  • Angelene Falk
    Australian Information Commissioner and Privacy Commissioner
  • Leo Hardiman QC
    Australian Freedom of Information Commissioner
  • Rachael Rangihaeata
    Information Commissioner, Queensland
  • Paxton Booth
    Privacy Commissioner, Queensland
  • Anna Rickard and Katie Shepherd
    A/Right to Information Commissioners, Queensland
  • Catherine Fletcher
    Information Commissioner, Western Australia
  • Richard Connock
    Ombudsman, Tasmania
  • Wayne Lines
    Ombudsman, South Australia
  • Stephanie Coleman
    A/Director, State Records, Privacy Committee of South Australia
  • Sven Bluemmel
    Information Commissioner, Victoria
  • Rachel Dixon
    Privacy and Data Protection Deputy Commissioner, Victoria
  • Joanne Kummrow
    Public Access Deputy Commissioner, Victoria
  • Penny McKay
    A/ACT Ombudsman
  • Elizabeth Tydd
    Information Commissioner, New South Wales
  • Samantha Gavel
    Privacy Commissioner, New South Wales
  • Peter Shoyer
    Information Commissioner, Northern Territory
  • Brenda Monaghan
    Deputy Information Commissioner, Northern Territory


On the 26 May 1997 the landmark  The Bringing Them Home Report was tabled in federal parliament.

Bringing them Home is the final report of the National Inquiry into the Separation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children from Their Families and was conducted by the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission (now called the Australian Human Rights Commission) between 1995 and 1997.

On 26 May 1998, the first National Sorry Day was held to commemorate the anniversary of the report and remember the grief, suffering and injustice experienced by the Stolen Generations.

For media enquiries contact: 

Simone Martin

t:  (03) 8684 7585
e: or

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