Stolen Generations Working Partnership (SGWP)
The Stolen Generations Working Partnership (SGWP) was a formal partnership between key Federal Government departments, and the National Sorry Day Committee, the National Stolen Generations Alliance, and Link-Up services from across Australia.
The SGWP provided a unique opportunity for Stolen Generations advocacy groups to negotiate directly with Commonwealth Government agencies about policies and programs that affect the Stolen Generations.
SGWP members met twice a year at forums chaired by the then Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs (now the Department of Social Services).
The broad themes highlighted at the time of the formation of the SGWP were:
- Access to Services (e.g. access to social and emotional well being services; participation of the Stolen Generations in decision-making around services);
- Healing (e.g. empowering the Stolen Generations to develop their own healing programs and support groups, as well as an evidence base of what works;
- Justice System (e.g. Supporting Stolen Generations members and their
children who are in prison, both pre- and post-release);
- Education (e.g. building broader community awareness about the history and resilience of the Stolen Generations among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as well as non-Indigenous peoples)
Towards the end of each calendar year, SGWP members gathered to discuss the Partnership’s priorities for the next 12 months. Six months after this forum, progress and barriers to action are discussed.
The March 2012 forum, which reviewed progress against the 2012 priorities, discussed the need to develop performance indicators for the partnership and the possibility of using the Scorecard as the performance measurement tool. This idea was discussed in more detail at the November 2012 forum, along with a number of reforms intended to improve the effectiveness of the SGWP.
The Membership of the SGWP in mid-2013 was as follows:
- The Department of Families and Housing, Community Services, and Indigenous Affairs
- The National Sorry Day Committee
- The National Stolen Generations Alliance
- The Department of Health and Ageing
- The Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations
- The Attorney-General's Department
- Department of the Prime Minister & Cabinet
- Department of Human Services
- Department of Regional Australia, Local Government, Arts and Sports – Office for the Arts
- Link-Up Services
Other organisations that maintained an active interest in the work of the SGWP include:
- The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Healing Foundation
- National Congress of Australia’s First Peoples
- The Australian Institute for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies
- The National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation
- Relationships Australia Canberra & Region
After the change of federal government in 2013, the majority of Indigenous affairs functions were transferred to the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet, this means that the Stolen Generations Working Partnership is not currently operational. NSDC is exploring formal ways to continue communication with the federal government into the future.