Support an Inquiry in Wolston Park

It is time that Qld faced its dirty past, owned up to the atrocities that occurred to 1000s of Queenslanders at Wolston Park Mental Hospital and convened a truth commission. For those of us as former patients or their surviving relatives, this will help us heal, to live with and move on from the horrors etched deep into our memories.

Public transparency to government institutions is essential to maintaining confidence in democracies. To this end the public records act needs to be amended to allow researchers, historians, former patients and relatives of patients deceased access to their institutional files at Wolston Park Mental Hospital.

Hiding these records for 100 years, till no-one is alive to remember the shocking human rights abuses carried out at Wolston Park Mental Hospital, is a cover up. Its time to open up the secrets of Wolston Park to the world, just as other abusive institutions have had to do. Its time that the Qld Government made amends and acknowledged the past wrongs of Wolston Park Mental Hospital.

You can support this call for a public inquiry into the atrocities of Wolston Park Mental Hospital by sharing the posts, listening to and sharing the blogs andpodcasts, by contacting your Member of Parliament, and by leaving a message of support.

Pearce House, Wolston Park where my brother, Randall Scott Carrington was detained involuntary from 1978-1979. He was the youngest, aged 18 locked up in a dormitory with 27 men.
Locked male ward dormitory, Wolston Park, where my brother was detained for 18 months against his will.

37 responses to “Support an Inquiry in Wolston Park”

  1. Truths need to be told if we are ever going to reconcile with what has occurred in the past regarding people who had a mental illness.

    1. Thanks Chris you are spot on

    2. Indeed Chris, the truth needs to be told for healing to occur and past wrongs righted. Thanks for your support

  2. Absolutely support the call for an inquiry into Wolston Park. Long overdue

    1. Thanks Betty
      Yes very long overdue

  3. Facing the truths of our past is difficult but essential. Only through learnings can we improve systems and better support our community- especially those that may experience periods of vulnerability.

    1. Spot on Erin. Thanks for your support

  4. Victor Minichiello avatar
    Victor Minichiello

    We can not move forward in the mental health field without fully acknowledging past errors. Inquiries into how institutions like this one treated their patients are critical historical and factual data for a democratic society. We should never hide what happened, and we can honestly face it and make sure we learn valuable lessons and never repeat these mistakes and failures.

    1. Well said Victor. It’s very important to redress past wrongs so the living can move on & those wrongs never repeated

  5. I’ve been a whistleblower against Queensland Health and the psychiatry profession for almost ten years. Unspeakable.

  6. I 100% support an inquiry into Wolston Park. State Ward Children were placed by the States Health and Childrens Department for Drug and Medical Experiments without a mental illness, and were placed in Wolston Park as a form of punishment for adolescent rebellion and bad behaviour, absconding from abusive Homes and Orphanages. Mary Jones

    1. Dear Mary
      Thanks for this information. How do you know this ? I’d be keen to talk to you. Please contact me with your details. Thanks Kerry

    2. Thanks Mary for your support for an inquiry into Wolston Park Mental Hospital.

  7. Penny Richards. avatar
    Penny Richards.

    I just finished listening to podcast of you talking to Dr Adele Chynoweth OAM. Great information for those who don’t know about this. Keep up the good work. I have read the Book “Goodna Girls.”

  8. Rhonda TRIVETT avatar
    Rhonda TRIVETT

    it was a government conspiracy for a long time. people just drugged, murdered, hurt, constantly raped just about every night. what the fuck, Was that our punishment. Some of us were just kids or teenagers.
    sorry for your loss your brother was a ok person to talk to over the fence. i am one of the goodna girls ok. yes do something if you can get help or closure. it should never had happened ok. good luck.

    1. Dear Rhonda my heart aches to hear what you & my brother Randall endured in Wolston Park. He was made a ward of the state at 17 locked up in Brisbane mental ward, given so much shock treatment he was like a zombie. Thank you for supporting my call for an Inquiry 🤗

      1. Please also consider contacting institutional abuse lawyer Angela Barry from West End ?

    2. Thanks for your support for an inquiry Rhonda. I would like to talk to you about my brother Randall. I am in awe at your resilience to survive the horrors of that place.

    3. Dear Rhonda
      I would really like to talk to you about your memories of my brother Randall Scott Carrington. However understand that it may be re-traumatising for you, and respect your privacy and decision not to.

  9. Penny Richards avatar
    Penny Richards

    Other Goodna Girls have commented on here also ,Rhonda, but not silly enough to give their real names. We also back an Inquiry that is why we commented but the book is written in pseudonyms so please keep it that way as that is what we want.

    1. Of course I respect your right to privacy and have not, and would never use any real names, other than my brother’s Randall Scott Carrington. There must be 1000s of others tortured in Wolston Park over the 1960s through to its closure.

  10. Hello Kerry Carrrington, I support an Inquiry into Wolston Park – but why are you speaking out about this now. Your brother was an involuntary patient in the 1970s, that is a long time ago – have you previously called for an Inquiry. I expect evidence has been lost over the decades which may result in those responsible not being held accountable.
    As well, while it was helpful that Dr Lesley van Schoubroeck advocated for some Wolston Park Women to obtain an apology and compensation, why did she not advocate for a full inquiry into Wolston Park when she was the Commissioner.
    In addition, when she was the Commissioner she failed to advocate for serious institutional abuse and neglect which was happening in facilities in Queensland at the time and the covering up of matters, and still does happen – matters which Cameron Dick MP when the Minister for Health failed to address at the time from 2015 – 2017 – and one matter which still has not been investigated in almost ten years.
    Historical institutional abuse is perhaps easier to address when there is no threat of anyone being charged, especially public servants, psychiatrists and politicians. It may even score politicians some points. Deanne

    1. Deanne,

      Thanks for supporting an inquiry into Wolston Park. To answer your question. I was a vulnerable 16 and 17 year old when my brother was made a ward of the state and locked up in Lowson House, then Pearce House Wolston Park, with no parents to care for me. I did complain twice about his treatment, and both times I was threatened that I would be made a ward of the state and locked up in Osler House, the sister locked ward to Pearce House.
      It has taken me a very long time to process my grief of my brother’s suicide in 1980. I had survivor guilt for 42 years and was in denial for many of those. I have found my voice, I have broken the silence and am calling upon a broad coalition of former patients, relatives, nurses, wardens, psychs, social workers, MPs, to come forward to speak the truth.
      Dr Lesley van Schoubroeck, as the former commissioner of Mental Health in Qld has come forward publicly to support an inquiry, but did not have the powers in that role to initiate an such inquiry. I really appreciate her support for such an inquiry.

  11. I agree 100% with everything you said Deanne on the 22/7/22. Many years ago I questioned how come the appropriate people did not do anything about it. They didnt do anything about it until the Goodna girls were finally heard and even now not enough has been done to help them to survive and have just been abandoned. The Health Department apologized to the girls for WRONGFULLY placing them into Goodna and Wolston Park, as they were mentally normal children, they did not have any form of a psychiatric illness, but were placed in their as a form of punishment for their behaviour, absconding from orphanages, standing up to physical and psychological abuse, and then were used for medical abuse as stated by Senator Murry in the Hansard Report. Mary Jones

    1. Thank you for your reply Mary. I relocated from New South Wales to Queensland in 1993 and I have done some reading about the Wolston Park Women/Goodna Girls over the years. There are no words for why this has not been fully investigated and resolved in some way. They clearly did not have psychiatric disorders. Similar has happened elsewhere, but Queensland appears to have been more severe.
      A woman with a physical disability was unlawfully detained ten years ago and subjected to incorrect and unlawful treatment at Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital, when she did not have a psychiatric disorder and was severely maltreated -… – at ten year battle while evidence is being lost. So it all still goes on.
      Mostly those in positions who could assist will only assist if there is something in it for themselves, to promote themselves – sadly they do not really care, and do not want to upset the psychiatry profession. And the victims/survivors have to battle year after year.
      Those who have failed to act and have stood by should be held accountable – they are paid by the taxpayer to do their job. Journalists in Queensland also need to do their jobs, respectfully, as well.
      No one seems to have any backbone and decency.

  12. Penny Richards. avatar
    Penny Richards.

    How lovely to see some common sense being stated by Deanne and Mary and some pretty relevant questions. I have one of my own. When the Goodna Girls were finally listened to and looked into who did the investigation? What outside entity or company was bought in to investigate or did the Health Dept. investigate themselves and that is not an investigation as that is a COVER UP. Were there Criminal referrals made to the Police? Were investigations done into the sexual abuse and rapes, were investigations made into the bashings and torture such as cigarette burns and were investigations made into the Medical Abuse they suffered by being given Psychotic Drugs that were meant for the Criminally Insane and which none of these Goodna Girls had symptoms of any of these mental illnesses? I know for a fact that they were NEVER compensated for any of these Criminal Activities done against them and some left with scars for life and memories of things that children should never see. They were given a pittance for life long suffering and then as Mary says, ABANDONED. Where are the Investigative Journalists and as Deanne says BACKBONE? Seems to me the only ones with Backbone and Fortitude are the ones who suffered at the hands of a corrupt Medical System and Childrens Department that only seems to be interested in covering their own Criminal Activity.

    1. Thank you for your reply Penny. What occurred were crimes against humanity, horrific human rights violations, crimes and more – where at the lawyers, human rights lawyers, the law firms who could assist, the politicians, journalists, and the medical profession having the decency to address the wrongs of the past perpetrated by its own profession, the Queensland Police Service, and others. Has anyone been charged, and why not? If priests can be charged decades later, then why not medical practitioners and public servants and politicians. The LNP and ALP are the same – it makes not difference in Queensland – they don’t care and do not want to upset the medical profession and psychiatrists and put their political career at risk.
      I don’t have the answers to your questions Penny, perhaps Kerry Carrington will be able to assist.

  13. Penny Richards. avatar
    Penny Richards.

    I agree as to where are all these so called people who are suppose to oversee that vulnerable people are taken care of? How do they sleep at night? I personally don’t think what Kerry is trying to do will go anywhere even though I would really really like it to. The Gov. will make sure of that. Too much time has passed and evidence gotten rid of as all of this should of been jumped on back when the Goodna Girls started back in the early 2000 as the door was opened then. The only one who listened to them was a Dr Adele Chynoweth OAM and from what I have gathered she was treated so very badly and disrespected when she knew the Goodna Girls for over a decade and so they should of gone to her for her expertise. These so called experts caused nothing but trouble and ended up causing infighting because of their interference. These Goodna Girls have been abandoned and I don’t just mean by Gov. but also by the Organisations that were set up to help people like them. I know a couple of these Goodna Girls and I asked them the last time someone checked on them and the ones I asked said more than a year maybe 2 but at least 18 months. The Qld Gov. are afraid of people like Dr Adele as she is a researcher and she may find out some dirty little secrets they are trying to hide like that researcher in Ireland found all those babies bodies. These Goodna Girls need to be spoken to now and find out what they know as eyewitness accounts as when they die all that will be lost. The Gov. most probably wants that. I know of a couple of others who have tried to investigate Wolston Park as well but were stopped such as Lisa Herbert who has something called The Bottom Drawer Book and an Author by the name of Christine Keneally. These people, like Dr Adele, were stopped by Qld Gov. Don’t tell me there is no corruption here. Did anyone know that (xxx) had worked at Wolston Park so that was convenient getting someone like him involved in an investigation and we are suppose to believe there was no cover up. If you believe that then there is a bridge I would like to sell you.

    1. Penny I sense and share your frustration. I have been trying to get access to my brother’s records and been denied. I am still trying. I have optimism, that the tide is turning, that others will come forward, that the public records act will be amended. I had to amend the mention of the Health Bureaucrat you named. Its only an inquiry that would provide us the protection we need to make such statements.

  14. I support an enquiry into Wolston Park. I am currently researching my family history. My granduncle’s death certificate states he died at ‘Brisbane Mental Hospital, Goodna’. I do not know any details of his time there. My step-mother was also a patient. I visited her with my children .. it think it was in the 80s. I would like to acknowledge them, and their life stories, and am shocked to learn that these records are not available. Hopefully enough people will come forward for change to happy. Will continue to follow your blog.

  15. Patricia OConnor avatar
    Patricia OConnor

    Tricia oconnor I would definitely support an inquiry.My son was a patient there 1981-2001.Many physical illnesses were also left unnoticed and untreated.

    1. Thanks Patricia – is your son still alive ? That’s a long time to be in Wolston Park. You both must have suffered so much 🤗

  16. I was placed there for work experience in 1985. What a shock it was to me as a naive girl.

    1. Indeed Simone
      What did you find so shocking?

    2. Simone..did you raise what you saw to anyone?

  17. Melinda brown avatar
    Melinda brown

    The stories of these poor victims needs heard .there needs to be justice and a sense of peace for there families

    1. Indeed Melinda
      There does need to be justice & peace for so many victims / survivors of institutional abuse at # Wolston Park mental hospital

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