Dealing with Parliamentary Committees

To everyone interested in the work of parliamentary Committees

Much of the detailed scrutiny and accountability work of the Commonwealth Parliament is conducted through parliamentary committees.

Parliamentary committees scrutinise the operation of government departments, examine policy issues and review some legislation before it is enacted.

They also provide an opportunity for the community to be directly involved in the work of the Parliament.

If you want to become involved in the work of committees, this document will help by explaining the type and standards of service you can expect from committee staff in the Department of the House of Representatives.

These standards represent a commitment from us to provide quality information and advice about the committees we support.

We report annually on our performance and would welcome any comments you have on the services we provide.

Clerk Assistant (Committees)
Department of the House of Representatives

Telephone: 02 6277 4397

Our commitment

If you want to know more about the work of parliamentary committees, we will provide you with information and advice that matches your needs.

If you want to contribute to a particular committee inquiry or activity, we will help you by providing information and advice about:

  • the issues being considered by the committee

  • the committee’s program of activities

  • how to prepare a submission

  • appearing before the committee as a witness.

We are guided in our work by the Parliamentary Service Values and the Parliamentary Service Code of Conduct. In particular, we will:

  • demonstrate high ethical standards

  • be professional, impartial and non-partisan

  • be open, honest and helpful

  • be responsive to your requests

  • treat you with respect and fairness

  • treat any complaints seriously and respond to them.

Our service standards

If you telephone us, we will:

  • identify ourselves by name when answering the telephone

  • respond to your calls quickly.

If the information you request is not immediately available, we will tell you when you can expect it.

If you write, fax or email us, we will:

  • act on your requests for printed information within five working days

  • reply to other written correspondence within 20 working days, sending an interim reply where this is not possible

  • in our reply, give you the name and contact details of someone who can provide further help if needed.

We will ensure that up to date information about committees supported by the Department of the House of Representatives is maintained on the Parliament’s website. The site will contain:

  • terms of reference for committee inquiries

  • general advice on how to contribute to committee inquiries

  • information about committee hearings and activities, including media releases

  • a list of public submissions made to committee inquiries and, where possible, copies of these submissions

  • links to transcripts of committee hearings

  • links to current and previous committee reports

  • where possible, copies of government responses to committee reports.


We welcome feedback on our performance so we can improve our standards of service. If you have any comments or suggestions for improvement please let us know.

If you have any concerns about the information or advice we have given you, please raise this with the secretary of the committee concerned. We will try to resolve the problem immediately.

If this is not successful, please contact the Clerk Assistant (Committees), who will respond to your concerns.

How to contact us

The general purpose standing committees and joint committees supported by staff in the Department of the House of Representatives, along with contact details, are listed below.

The mailing address for all parliamentary committees is:

PO Box 6021, Parliament House, CANBERRA ACT 2600.