Victorian Koorie Records Taskforce – Final Report
The Victorian Koorie Records Taskforce was established in 2001 as a major initiative of the Victorian Government’s response to the Bringing Them Home: report of the National Inquiry into the Separation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children from their Families (the Bringing Them Home) report. The essence of its purpose was in response to Recommendation 23 of the report to ‘establish Records Taskforces in each state and territory to assist members of the Stolen Generations in tracing their families’.
To this end the Taskforce has been active over the last 10 years in addressing access barriers facing Indigenous people.
The original Terms of Reference of the Taskforce are set out in the Bringing them Home report. These were to:
- Develop common access guidelines to Indigenous personal, family and community records as appropriate to the jurisdiction and in accordance with established privacy principles;
- Advise the government whether any church or other non-government record- holding agency should be assisted to preserve and index its records and administer access;
- Advise government on memoranda of understanding for dealing with inter-state enquiries and for the inter-state transfer of files and information;
- Advise government and churches generally on policy relating to access to and uses of Indigenous personal, family and community information; and
- Advise government on the need to introduce or amend legislation to put these policies and practices into place.
This final report from the Taskforce reflects on the key milestones achieved over the course of the last decade: substantial initiatives aimed at delivering tangible results. It also outlines projects that will continue beyond this point; that will continue to deliver services to, and reduce barriers for, Indigenous people; that will empower them to take the necessary steps to fill gaps in their past and to progress through the stages of healing, reunion and participation.