Report into House petitioning system tabled

Department of the House of Representatives

The Standing Committee on Petitions has today tabled its report into the security and accessibility aspects of the House of Representatives petitions system.

The Committee examined the need to balance security and accessibility requirements for electronic and paper petitions, the functionality of current systems, and the options for future development and change to the petitions system. Chair of the Committee, Mr Ken O’Dowd MP, said the inquiry has highlighted the ongoing importance of petitioning to Australians.

‘Through the course of its inquiry the Committee has been presented with evidence on the importance and functionality of the House petitions system, and we thank all inquiry participants who put forward a submission. As the only way for members of the public to have a direct voice to Parliament we recognise the value of petitioning,’ said Mr O’Dowd.

The inquiry report reflects on the current functions of the petitions system, and its effectiveness at maintaining an accessible yet secure way to facilitate public support for petitions.

Mr O’Dowd added, ‘The Petitions Committee seeks to retain the accessibility of the system, while continuing to manage security requirements. The report does not include recommendations, as we found that any changes to security would negatively impact accessibility and vice versa.’ He also noted that the Committee understands that the current balance meets the requirements of the Australian public. ‘We will continue to work to deliver a secure, user-friendly system to facilitate debate and change for the betterment of all Australians,’ said Mr O’Dowd.

/Public Release.