Engaging with Committees

Committees take Parliament to the people and enable members to become better informed about community views. They allow members to examine issues in detail and with greater public participation and debate than if the matter were only considered by the House. There are a number of ways in which individuals and groups can engage with committees.

Make a Submission
Committees often start an inquiry by calling for submissions from the public and relevant organisations. Submissions inform committee members on factors and information relevant to an inquiry, and show how you, your organisation, or your community feel about an issue.

Information and arguments presented in submissions inform the committee's deliberations on an issue and may be quoted or referred to in the committee's report to Parliament. Most submissions received by the committee are made public and published on the committee's web page.

More information about making a submission can be found in the Preparing Submissions to Committee Inquiries brochure.

Give Evidence
Committee hearings allow members of Parliament to hear directly from the public, interest groups and organisations. They also enable members to seek clarification or further details about issues raised in submissions.

A committee can invite individuals and representatives to give evidence at a hearing. A witness may have made a submission to the inquiry, but this is not essential. You can ask to appear as a witness but the final decision will rest with the Committee. Not all individuals who make a submission will appear as witnesses.

More information about giving evidence at a hearing can be found in the Information for Committee Witnesses brochure.

Attend a Hearing
People can attend public hearings held at Parliament House or at other locations around NSW. Details of upcoming hearings can be found on the relevant inquiry page.

Committee hearings are usually held in public; however sometimes they are held in private (in camera). In such cases the public and media are asked to leave the hearing room.

Stay Informed
Visit the following link to sign up to updates on committee activities such as: new inquiries; upcoming hearings; newly published transcripts of hearings; newly published reports; newly published Government responses to committee reports; and Legislation Review Digests.

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