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Aboriginals and today's Australia

This week, we corrected the webquest on the "Freedom Ride" and the situation of Aboriginals today. First, we learned a lot of things about Charles Perkins. He was an Aboriginal activist and also a football player. He played for the famous Manchester United team, but one day, just after a game against Oxford, he decided to leave the UK to go to university in Australia and he was the first Indigenous Australian to graduate university and also to become head of a Commonwealth Government Department later on which enabled him to try and help Aboriginals to get a better access to education.

He was also a key member of the "Freedom Ride" which was organized by Sydney students in 1965 to expose the situation of Aboriginals in Australia and which became an important part of the movement for civil rights in Australia. Things started changing over this period and thanks to people like him, Aboriginals have better life conditions today, even if they are still very disadvantaged.

Today, the population of Indigenous people in Australia is very young ; more than 70% is under 25 years old, and the population keep growing. The most important problems Aboriginals have to face are alcohol, violence, a shorter life expectancy, a higher rate of infant mortality, worse housing condition, etc.

At last, we watched a speech delivered by Prime Minister Kevin Rudd in 2008 to "The Stolen Generation". In his speech, he apologises for all the horrible things that happened to Aboriginals and make promises for a better future.

Here is a link to the extract of the speech we watched in class.

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