Reference: Guidance for officers giving evidence and providing information
The following matter has been referred to the Privileges Committee for inquiry and report:
The adequacy and appropriateness of current guidance and advice available to officers giving evidence to Senate committees and when providing information to the Senate and to senators, including:
(a) the adequacy and applicability of government guidelines and instructions;
(b) the procedural and legal protections afforded to those officers;
(c) the awareness among agencies and officers of the extent of the Senate’s power to require the production of information and documents; and
(d) the awareness among agencies and officers of the nature of relevant advice and protections.
An earlier, related inquiry into ‘government guidelines for witnesses appearing before parliamentary committees’ (the government guidelines for witnesses) lapsed after the end of the last parliament. Information on that inquiry and the committee’s brief report on the matter are available here. The new inquiry covers the same area as well as broader territory. Information on the background of the inquiry can be found here, along with the submissions received by the committtee.
On 9 February 2012 the committee received a supplementary submission from the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet containing a revised version of the government guidelines.
For further information, contact:
Senate Standing Committee of Privileges
PO Box 6100
Canberra ACT 2600
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