zaterdag, oktober 31, 2015

Dromen in het Rijksmuseum


Vele handen klik

29 October 2015
BBC Magazine 

Up until the late 1960s the UK sent   

children living in care homes to new lives in Australia and other countries. It was a brutal experience for many, writes Kirstie Brewer.  
In the winter of 1949, 13-year-old Pamela Smedley boarded a ship to Australia with 27 other girls. She had been told by the nuns from the Catholic home she lived in that she was going on a day-trip. In reality, she was being shipped out to an orphanage in Adelaide and wouldn't see England again for more than three decades.
"We thought it would be like going to Scarborough for the day because we were so innocent and naive," says Pamela, who is now in her 70s and still lives in Adelaide.
"The nuns said that in Australia you could pick the oranges off the trees, and I was very excited because I loved oranges."
Pamela's unmarried Catholic mother had been pressured to give her up as a baby and so she was sent to live under the care of nuns at Nazareth House in Middlesbrough, Teesside.

The place was cruel and joyless, according to Pamela, and she remembers that when the Reverend Mother asked who wanted to go to Australia, every girl in the home put their hand up.
Once the SS Ormonde set sail for its six-week voyage, the girls soon realised this would be no day-trip. Instead they were allowed to believe there would be families waiting to adopt them.
"We arrived wearing our winter coats and hats and I remember being hit by this stinking 100-degree heat," recalls Pamela. "I hated it and when we found out we had travelled 10,000 miles just to be put in another orphanage we all just cried and cried."

Pamela would spend the next two years at the Sisters of Mercy Goodwood Orphanage, an imposing redbrick Catholic institution, home to about 100 children.
She was one of as many as 100,000 British children to be sent overseas to Canada, Australia and other Commonwealth countries as child migrants between 1869 and 1970.
Run by a partnership of charities, churches and governments, the schemes
were sold as an opportunity for a better life for children from impoverished backgrounds and broken homes. In reality, an isolated and brutal childhood awaited many of them.
Pamela was one of an estimated 7,000 children to go to Australia, some as young as four. They were often given the false status of "orphans" to simplify proceedings - and most never saw their homes, or their families again.

"Child migrants were actively solicited in Australia as a way of building up the white Anglo-Saxon population and to give the growing economy there a boost," explains Gordon Lynch, Michael Ramsey Professor of Modern Theology at the University of Kent.
This was not something which happened under the radar - the vast majority of children were sent to Australia with government funding.
"It is sometimes easy to assume childcare continuously improves and becomes more enlightened, but by the time Pamela went out [to Australia] the child migration schemes were really running against the grain of accepted childcare practice in post-war Britain," explains Lynch, who is also a contributing curator to a new exhibition around the subject at the V&A Museum of Childhood in London.
Upon arrival at Goodwood, all the children's personal mementos - photographs, letters, toys - were taken from them and they were left with just a Bible. Everyone was terrified of the Reverend Mother, even the other nuns, says Pamela. She recalls the big strap the nun had around her waist which her rosaries would hang from.
"It is what she'd use to beat us - at night she would walk up and down the dormitories and if you so much as twitched in your bed you'd get the strap."

When she arrived, Pamela remembers defiantly shouting out "God Bless England!" during morning prayers, rather than saluting Australia, for which she received "the thrashing of her life" from the Reverend Mother. Eventually, the nun retired and was replaced with someone much kinder and more progressive, according to Pamela.
Daily life at Goodwood consisted of early prayers, chores and then school, followed by more chores, prayers and an early bedtime of 6pm.
A few hours a day would be spent making the strings butchers use to hang their meat. "It was very coarse string and it made our fingers bleed," says Pamela. "If you did anything wrong the penalty was an extra 100 strings and the nun in charge would hit us with her walking stick."
Child labour helped schemes like the one at Goodwood to be financially viable, according to Lynch.

"It would often be presented as an opportunity for children to learn useful skills or a trade but it was much more about providing some economic contribution," he explains.
Pamela also remembers working in the laundry room and would spend school holidays living with a family and being worked hard throughout her stay. "The two daughters in the family were very good to me but their mother just saw me as free labour," she explains.
Pamela says that every now and then a priest would come to check up on how the children were getting on. "The nuns would stand right beside us when we were asked questions and toys would appear in time for his inspections, but as soon as he left they were taken away," she says.
One of the biggest failings of these schemes was that staff were often poorly trained and poorly resourced and very few follow-up checks were made, explains Lynch. Eventually, the Ross Report came out in 1956, as the result of a visit to Australia by a British team of inspectors, commissioned by the Home Office.
"It made grim reading and said that children who'd already had disruptive backgrounds and been subjected to traumatic experience in the UK were really the last people who should be sent overseas," says Lynch. Confidential appendices, containing the worst of the findings, were not publicly released until 1983.
But despite the report, children continued to be shipped overseas. According to Lynch, the reality became "an uneasy truth" - the Home Office weren't prepared to publicly go against the Commonwealth Relations Office (who were in charge of the schemes) so they tried to discourage local authorities from continuing to send children overseas instead.

"Furthering the British Empire was still very much a priority and there was also a fear of going up against not only the Australian government, but the Catholic Church," he explains.
The Australian government soon countered the Ross Report with its own glowing review of all the homes under criticism.
Sexual abuse was a harsh reality for many of the children under the care of these schemes, including Pamela, who was assaulted while on the voyage over to Australia and while working at an isolated shearing station, aged 15.
"We were taught never to let a man touch you - and that was all I knew, so I believed I was a sinner and would go to hell for it," she says. When it happened for the first time on the boat, the nuns in Pamela's charge insisted she was just dreaming. "I was terrified and I still go to sleep with my hands guarding between my legs," she says.
At the shearing station Pamela had just one weekend off every six weeks and spent her entire first pay on a ceramic miniature English house. "I bought it to remind me of England," she says.
Desperate to break free of the scheme's clutches, she got married three days after her 18th birthday. In 1989 she was connected with the Child Migrants Trust, who helped her to be reunited with her mother Betty. For 40 years Betty had believed Pamela was adopted by a loving family in England.
Henk Heithuis
They kept in touch until Betty died, and in 2010 Pamela was one of 60 former child migrants to be flown over to England to hear an official apology from the then prime minister, Gordon
"I still have nightmares about what happened but hearing the apology gave me a little bit of peace," says Pamela. "It showed that finally somebody cared about what happened to us."

On Their Own: Britain's Child Migrants is at the V&A Museum of Childhood until 12 June 2016

donderdag, oktober 29, 2015


"This was not just an attack on our hospital - it was an attack on the Geneva Conventions. This cannot be tolerated. These Conventions govern the rules of war and were established to protect civilians in conflicts – including patients, medical workers and facilities. They bring some humanity into what is otherwise an inhumane situation."

Yemen ziekenhuis Artsen Zonder Grenzen verwoest door luchtaanvallen in Sa'ada

27 October 2015

Sanaa/Paris/New York – Airstrikes carried out late last night by the Saudi-led coalition in northern Yemen destroyed a hospital supported by the international medical humanitarian organization Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), MSF announced today. 
The small hospital, in the Haydan district in Saada Province, was hit by several airstrikes beginning at 22:30 last night. Hospital staff and two patients managed to escape before subsequent airstrikes occurred over a two hour period.  One staff member was slightly injured while escaping. With the hospital destroyed, at least 200,000 people now have no access to lifesaving medical care.
“This attack is another illustration of a complete disregard for civilians in Yemen, where bombings have become a daily routine,” said Hassan Boucenine, MSF head of mission in Yemen.
The bombing of civilians and hospitals is a violation of international humanitarian law and MSF is demanding that coalition forces explain the circumstances around the attack in Haydan. The hospital’s GPS coordinates were regularly shared with the Saudi-led coalition, and the roof of the facility was clearly identified with the MSF logo.

"Even 12 hours after the airstrike, I could see the smoke coming out of the facility,” said Miriam Czech, MSF project coordinator in Saada. “The inpatient department, the outpatient department, the maternity ward, the lab and the emergency room are all destroyed. It was the only hospital still functional in Haydan area,” she said.
MSF began supporting the hospital in May. Since then, roughly 3,400 patients were treated, with an average of 200 war wounded per month admitted to the emergency room.
“Yemen is in an all-out war, in which the population caught on the wrong side is considered a legitimate target,” said Boucenine. “Markets, schools, roads, bridges, trucks transporting food, displaced persons camps, and health structures have been bombed and destroyed. And the first victims are civilians.” 
MSF’s priority is to reestablish a new health facility as soon as possible, in order to maintain the provision of healthcare to the population of Haydan.
MSF provides impartial and free of charge health services to those in need in more than 70 countries in the world including Yemen. In Yemen, MSF works in eight Yemeni governorates (Sana’a, Saada, Aden, Taiz, Amran, Al-Dhale’, Ibb, and Hajja). Since the beginning of the crisis in Yemen in March 2015, MSF treated more than 15,500 war wounded and is still providing non-emergency health services. 

woensdag, oktober 28, 2015

Iqaluit Eric Dejaeger: 5 jaar cel dit keer

Eric Dejaeger,  Oblaat, een voormalige katholieke priester van Belgische afkomst, is vorige week donderdag in Iqaluit tot vijf jaar cel veroordeeld voor feiten van kindermisbruik. Dat melden de Canadese media. De ‘eskimopater’ zal evenwel geen extra celstraf moeten uitzitten.
De 69-jarige Dejaeger stond in Iqaluit, in het noordoosten van Canada, terecht voor feiten die tussen 1975 en 1978 plaatsvonden in het Newman Theological College in Edmonton, waar hij toen studeerde. De slachtoffers waren toen tussen de zes en negen jaar. Het ging in totaal om vier aanklachten: twee aanklachten voor grove obsceniteiten en de aanranding van een jongen en een meisje. Dejaeger had in september al schuldig gepleit.
In februari was Dejaeger al eens veroordeeld tot negentien jaar cel voor 32 seksuele misdrijven, gaande van verkrachting tot blootstelling aan bestialiteiten, op Inuït-kinderen in de arctische gemeenschap in Igloolik tussen 1978 en 1982.
De rechter oordeelde donderdag wel dat Dejaeger de beide celstraffen gelijktijdig kan uitzitten. Dat betekent concreet dat hij geen bijkomende tijd achter de tralies zal moeten doorbrengen.
Volgens CBC heeft Dejaeger een aanvraag tot beroep ingediend, maar het is niet duidelijk welk deel van het vonnis hij aanvecht.

'Land issues' thwart new public housing units in Iqaluit 'Until the land issues in Iqaluit are solved, we cannot build any more houses,' says minister responsible


Iqaluit is not getting any new public housing units this year, despite being ranked by the Nunavut Housing Corporation as the community most in need.

"Until the land issues in Iqaluit are solved, we cannot build any more houses," says the minister responsible, George Kuksuk.

Nunavut's social housing faces billion-dollar shortfall
The issue, Kuksuk says, is that the city doesn't have any lots ready to be developed for five- or 10-unit housing complexes.

MLAs started reviewing the 2016-2017 capital budget for Community and Government Services Tuesday.

When asked about the Iqaluit land issue, Community and Government Services Minister Johnny Mike said the city never contacted him about the problem.

Department officials said they will meet with the Nunavut Housing Corporation and the city to discuss concerns, and come up with a five-year strategy.

But George Hickes, the MLA for Iqaluit-Tasiluk, says it's too late. He says he understands the city is too cash strapped to develop lots, but more planning should have been done.

"I think there should have been more consultation with Community and Government Services, with the Nunavut Housing Corporation, with the city of Iqaluit, to recognize that this need was coming, that this situation was coming and get ahead of it," Hickes said.

"It seems everyone is in a reactive mode now and I don't think that's the right way of doing business."

compleet klik

"is it really my history or is it the history of what Canada did to me and to so many others?” Ontario court to decide if evidence from residential school survivors should be destroyed

Ontario’s top court has been tasked with deciding whether evidence given by thousands of Indian residential school survivors who sought compensation for sexual and other abuse should be maintained for future generations, or destroyed.
A two-day hearing kicked off on Tuesday before a three-judge panel of the Court of Appeal. Multiple parties, including the federal government and a number of religious entities, are involved in the process, underscoring the complexity of the case. There are those who wish to see the transcripts and other records preserved, and those who want upheld a lower court judge’s 2014 decision to have them eventually destroyed.
CBC  klik
At issue are records of testimony from nearly 38,000 survivors, produced in emotional hearings over the last several years as part of the Indian residential schools claims process. Advocates say the records paint an important picture of a painful chapter of Canadian history that may vanish if the appeal court upholds the 2014 ruling.
The chief adjudicator of the Independent Assessment Process (IAP), Dan Shapiro, has argued the complete destruction of recordings, transcripts and decisions is the only way to protect privacy.
The Truth and Reconciliation Commission, which heard from survivors in public sessions across the country and also collected documents from government and churches, is arguing to keep some of the records in a permanent archive. A likely location would be the National Research Centre for Truth and Reconciliation in Winnipeg.
Ottawa, meanwhile, has argued that IAP records are government records. That would mean that a record could be released 20 years after those identified in it have died, according to the IAP.
Last year, Toronto Superior Court Justice Paul Perell ruled that the records could be destroyed after a 15-year holding period to allow for notification to survivors who may choose to maintain their own records in an archive. That ruling is now the subject of this week’s appeal.
Michael Cachagee, a 76-year-old Ontario residential school survivor who participated in the claims process, told the Star that all records should be preserved, and also pointed out that notification could be difficult as some survivors have since died.
“When you go back and look at history, who really makes the decision on what is pertinent and what isn’t pertinent? Once history becomes malleable, then is it history?” he said. “If I was asked (about preserving his records), I’d say keep it, because it’s part of my history and it happened to me. But is it really my history or is it the history of what Canada did to me and to so many others?”
In a factum filed with the court, Shapiro’s lawyers have outlined several parts of Perell’s decision with which Shapiro disagrees. He is arguing that the 15-year holding period should be brought down to two years, and that audio recordings of testimony should not be maintained.
“The history of the residential schools is one of terrible betrayal,” says the factum. “The (Indian Residential School Settlement Agreement), crafted by the parties, adopts a model of reconciliation that compensates survivors without requiring them to publicly share what happened to them. It is the survivor’s choice — and no one else’s — whether to share these painful and intimate details, or to forget and have forgotten.”
Justice Murray Sinclair, who headed the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, told The Canadian Press this week ahead of the appeal that he’s concerned that the survivors’ stories will be lost forever.
“In a few generations, that will allow people to be able to deny the validity of the stories we have heard,” he said. “Right now there are deniers of those facts.”
Even if the records are maintained, it remains to be seen whether they would be accessible to the public. The director of the National Research Centre for Truth and Reconciliation, Ry Moran, told the Star last year that the majority-aboriginal board of governors, assisted by a committee of survivors from across the country, would advise on how to handle the collection.
A sticking point in all of this is that claimants were apparently never asked at the beginning of the claims process whether they wanted their records released.
“The consent should have been built in early on, and there should have been steps where people could opt in or out,” Kevin Walby, associate professor of criminal justice at the University of Winnipeg, told the Star.
“I do think that there’s significant value in the records for future generations, not just for researchers who might want to analyze these testimonies in various ways, but for the communities themselves, for artists, for journalists, for people in other countries who want to understand the history of Canada.”

With files from Tim Alamenciak and The Canadian Press

dinsdag, oktober 27, 2015

De wereld draait door uit de kast

uitzendbureau  G. Leers

'Ik zag mijn geaardheid als djinn'

En wij dankzij Vrij Nederland maar denken dat ie bij zijn moeder woonde
Hoe kwam die man in vredesnaam bij die nonnen terecht? 


The Catholic Church will pick up the bill, which could be up to $20,000 a day.

CLERGY sex abuse survivor Philip Nagle asked for a minute’s silence following his testimony to the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse on Tuesday.
Mr Nagle was honouring his 12 fellow St Alipius Christian Brothers Primary School pupils who have committed suicide – out of a class of 33.

A man whose wife was denied life insurance after she disclosed that she had had depression says he rues the day they were honest with the insurance company.

Six years ago Glen Smith and his wife Carmel were advised to take out a life policy with their superannuation.
But because of her history of mental illness, she was denied the life insurance.

"I'm sure there must be many, many people which are out there who have depression and they haven't actually disclosed that," Mr Smith told 7.30.
"But because my wife was honest and did disclose it, she was knocked back. So my suggestion is don't disclose it."
Like many Australians, Ms Smith was occasionally depressed and received treatment accordingly, but she was not suicidal.
"I think it's terribly unfair," Mr Smith said.
"Especially for somebody who's got it totally under control and is getting medication for it and they know they've got a history of depression and they have sought medical treatment for it.

Victoria police are planning a major security operation for the appearance of George Pell at the child sexual abuse royal commission in response to concerns about protecting him from angry victims.
Cardinal Pell, the Vatican’s third most senior official, has retained one of Australia’s most expensive barristers, Allan Myers QC, for what could be a make-or-break appearance in Melbourne on December 14.
The Catholic Church will pick up Mr Myers’s bill, which could be up to $20,000 a day



Ella Ingram is challenging QBE after she was denied a claim on her travel insurance four years ago.
On doctor's advice, she cancelled a planned overseas trip because of severe depression but QBE refused to pay out, claiming that mental illness was excluded.




Royal Commission If you're ready to share your story, we're ready to listen.

As Newcastle's Anglican Bishop Greg Thompson urges his diocese to come to terms with the church's handling of child sexual abuse, he has admitted that he too was a victim of abuse.
Members of the Synod took part in an historic vote at the weekend, making a formal apology from the Newcastle Diocese, acknowledging it actively discouraged those who reported abuse.
Synod members watched video interviews of two Newcastle priests recounting harrowing stories of their own experience of being sexually abused as children.
Earlier this year, Bishop Thompson marked 500 days in the top job, fighting tears as he apologised to victims for past church cover-ups and the poor handling of complaints about child sexual abuse.
This morning Bishop Thompson revealed to 1233 ABC Newcastle's Aaron Kearney he has been making his own journey as a survivor.
"Well, I'm both a Bishop, but also a survivor," he said.
"I'm someone who has also faced that journey.
"I'm working through that personally, and as someone who is committed to being with people, I do that out of my experience and out of a deep longing for people to be loved.
Aaron Kearney: You joined the Church that did wrong by you?

Bishop calls for reflection after priest's death

A suspected paedophile Anglican priest has been found dead in his Hunter home while awaiting a hearing into child sex abuse allegations.
Reverend Campbell Brown was accused of abuse at the North Coast Children's Home dating back more than 50 years.
Evidence of the abuse was recently heard by the Royal Commission into Child Sexual Abuse.
It is understood Brown was awaiting a Diocesan Professional Standards hearing but was found dead in his Hunter home on Sunday.
Newcastle Anglican Bishop Greg Thompson has sent a letter to Members of the Synod saying "the burdens people carry can lead to awful consequences".
He says people should be mindful of those who bear great struggles of mind and spirit and how important it is to share the burden with others.
Bishop Thompson has invited the diocese to enter a time of prayer and reflection on their loss and heartache.
Anyone wanting to discuss issues raised in this story can call Lifeline on 13 11 14.

Police renew calls for Anglican clergy abuse victims to come forward

Royal commission on child sex abuse moves focus to Anglicans

■BISHOP Greg Thompson has urged people who have experienced sexual abuse to contact Newcastle police Strike Force Arinya-2, in a pastoral letter to be read to parishioners this weekend. ‘‘I know that many of you will be shocked and surprised by the continued and necessary public scrutiny of the diocese,’’ the bishop said. 
People requiring support to go to police, or counselling or other support from the diocese, can contact director of professional standards and former police officer Michael Elliott 


2007 KLIK
46       THE CHAIR:   Bishop, thank you for your evidence today and        

 1       We are grateful for what you have had to say and the
 2       contribution you have made to our work.  You are now
3       formally excused from the summons that you received.
5       THE WITNESS:   Thank you.


 .24/08/2015 (156)          16109    G J ROBINSON (Ms Needham)