This morning I woke with two words ‘Senate Inquiry’ , so today is another information sharing day.

The Senate is one of the two houses of the Australian Federal Parliament. It consists of 76 senators, twelve from each of the six states and two from each of the mainland territories. It shares the power to make laws with the other House of the Parliament, the House of Representatives.

A Senate Inquiry is a committee made up of Senators that sets aside time to investigate and discover the facts about a specific policy or issue. They don’t want it to get all waffly, so they decide in advance what topics it’s going to look at, and no others: these are called the “terms of reference“.  Anyone who has knowledge or experience relevant to these topics is invited to make a submission to the Inquiry: so if you know something about the thing they’re investigating they need you to tell them about it so that they can understand it properly. [1]

Next I looked up Senate Inquiry and Corona virus and discovered that there is a current Senate Inquiry into the Australian Government’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

On 8 April 2020, the Senate resolved to establish a Select Committee on COVID-19 to inquire into the Australian Government’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The committee is to present its final report on or before 30 June 2022.

The closing date for submissions is 28 May 2020.

Committee statement on submissions 

This inquiry into the Australian Government’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic is receiving a lot of interest from the Australian community. The committee wishes to assure submitters that each piece of correspondence to the inquiry is being read and considered. The processing of each document is not an automated process and may take some time. Once the committee has made decisions about your document, you will be notified.

The committee welcomes submissions from individuals about their experiences in relation to the government’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, please note that the committee does not have the ability to advise on, advocate for, or take action relating to individual cases.

All documents sent to the inquiry become committee documents on receipt, and are only made public following a decision of the committee. 

Please note that the committee has decided not to publish submissions comprising short or general statements, but has noted the concerns and issues raised in them. 

The committee may not accept or publish material that is not relevant to the inquiry’s terms of reference or which reflects adversely on others. 

Committee Secretariat contact:

Committee Secretary
Department of the Senate
PO Box 6100
Parliament House
Canberra ACT 2600

Phone: 02 6277 3892
Fax: 02 6277 5706