Joint Statement: Pearson v State of Queensland (Wages and Savings Class Action)

Please attribute to Deputy Premier and Minister for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Partnerships Jackie Trad:

Today marks an important day in rebuilding the relationship with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Queenslanders. Today I can announce that the parties in Pearson v the State of Queensland have agreed in principle to a settlement scheme, subject to the Federal Court’s approval at a date yet to be determined.

This settlement has been reached in the spirit of reconciliation and in recognition of the legacy and impact of the ‘control’ policies on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Queenslanders, including elders past and present. On reaching settlement the Queensland Government is also mindful of those who have since passed and those who are aging, and will work with the Applicant’s legal representatives to progress the settlement in an expedient manner.

The Queensland Government is committed to righting historic wrongs and I look forward to continuing to work closely with the community as we move forward together.

Please attribute to Attorney-General and Minister for Justice Yvette D’Ath:

In September 2016, Mr Hans Pearson commenced representative proceedings in the Federal Court on behalf of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, living and deceased, who were subject to the Protection Acts controls. Mr Pearson alleged breach of trust and fiduciary duty regarding the handling of accounts and the management of wages obtained under the ‘Protection Acts’ during the claim period of 1939 to 1972.

The parties have agreed in principle on a $190 million settlement, inclusive of the applicant’s legal costs and administrative costs.

The parties will now apply to the Federal Court to seek to have the settlement approved at a date yet to be determined.

Subject to the Federal Court approving the settlement, I know that all parties involved in this matter hope it will provide some measure of closure in relation to this historic issue, and a way for all Queenslanders to move forward in partnership.

/Public Release. View in full here.