Two children of the stolen generation come to court: Gunner and Cubillo v The Commonwealth

Bernard McCabe, Bond University

Document Type Journal Article

McCabe, Bernard (2000) Two children of the stolen generation come to court: Gunner and Cubillo v The Commonwealth. The National Legal Eagle, November 2000, pp. 11-18.

Copyright ©The Law Society of New South Wales , 2000.

Reproduced with permission

Abstract

Extract:
The Federal Court has recently considered claims brought by two members of a group that has become known as "The Stolen Generation." In Gunner and Cubillo v The Commonwealth,' the applicants accused the Commonwealth of wrongly taking them away from their families as children and placing them in institutions in the Northern Territory in the 1940s and 1950s.

The claims made by Mrs Lorna Cubillo and Mr Peter Gunner were separate, but they were heard together by Justice O'Loughlin. The trial took place over fourteen months. The judge heard witnesses called by the applicants and by the Commonwealth, and his Honour reviewed a large number of documents in an attempt to piece together what happened to the applicants not long after World War 11, when they were children.

The Court ultimately found the Commonwealth was not liable for what happened to the applicants.