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Published: 06 June 2013
Author: Ryan Carlisle Thomas

What about compensation for child migrants?

Britain has announced it will pay compensation at a total proposed cost of 12.5 million pounds to thousands of Kenyans who were sexually abused and tortured in detention camps during the 1950s following a Mau Mau uprising under colonial rule. See The Journal: UK to compensate 5,228 Kenyans for Mau Mau uprising abuse.

Whilst it is absolutely appropriate for the British Government to be compensating these elderly Kenyans who no doubt still live with the trauma of their experiences, the compensation that is being negotiated is in stark contrast to the refusal to consider compensation for the many thousands of children who were shipped to Australia by the British Government only to be subjected to sexual assault, torture and slave labour in Orphanages in this country.

Whilst the British Government apologised to the Child Migrants in February of 2010 and the Australian Government apologised in November of 2010, neither Government has taken the step of offering compensation to these child victims.

Pressure needs to be maintained on both Governments and the Institutions in which these children were placed to establish a Redress or Reparation Fund to ensure that these victims of child abuse and other child victims have proper redress. An apology without compensation is for many of the victims meaningless.

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