Brown apologies not letting C of E know

UK governments in the 1950s were so intimidated by religious instituitions that they did not inform them of findings showing that the churches were unwittingly sending “orphans” into deplorable conditions in Australia:

The BBC has seen a confidential report written by British officials in 1956. They went to Australia to look at the places where children were being sent, visiting 26 homes, two thirds of those approved by the British government. Their conclusions were damning.

For instance, one place was described as isolated, with “deplorable conditions”, and the boys “appeared unhappy”. Accommodation at another was primitive, with managers “rigid and narrow in outlook”.

The worst 10 places were blacklisted but while the government decided what to do with the report, children were still being sent to those homes. According to Steven Constantine, professor of modern history at Lancaster University, child migration after the war was part of an Australian policy to increase the white British population.

And charities in the UK strongly believed children would benefit. “The pressures on the government to continue this policy come very strongly from the Australian government and also from these very powerful and prestigious child rescue societies,” said Prof Constantine.

“The Church of England were involved in sending children, the Church of Scotland, the Roman Catholic Church.

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