chapter  6
15 Pages

Australia: The Ongoing Debate about Ending Physical Punishment

ByBERNADETTE SAUNDERS, JUDY CASHMORE

Aboriginal people have inhabited Australia for at least 50,000 years. In the late 18th century, the British set up penal colonies in Australia; between 1788 and 1868 160,000 convicts were transported. At this time, up to 1,000,000 Aboriginal people lived a hunter/gatherer lifestyle across Australia in 300 clans and speaking 250 languages. In the mid 1800s, gold was discovered and farms fl ourished, resulting in wealth, investment, and migration. In 1901, Australia became a federation comprising six states and territories with the British monarch as Head of State. Australia’s Indigenous people were denied land rights until the 1992 High Court decision re Mabo, and continue to be adversely affected by paternalistic ‘welfare’ policies and practices.