National Sorry Day

National Sorry Day is an annual Australia-wide observance occurring on May 26th. This day is held to acknowledge the mistreatment of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and provides the opportunity for unity and healing for the Stolen Generations, their families and communities.

The Stolen Generations refer to Indigenous Children who were forcibly removed from their families during the 20th Century through the policy of assimilation.

The first National Sorry Day was observed in 1998, a year after the first “Bringing Them Home” report. Among that report’s recommendations was the idea of an unreserved apology and the proposition that a portion of the national budget should be put towards reparations. It took several Australian government administrations before an apology was officially offered by Prime Minister Kevin Rudd on February 13, 2008 to First Nations Australians.

Further Reading