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Private sessions

Private sessions allow people to share their experiences with a Royal Commissioner in a confidential setting.

Registrations for private sessions closed on 30 June 2022. We expect to continue holding private sessions for the remainder of 2023 for those who have registered.

The safety and wellbeing of those engaging with the Royal Commission is our primary concern. Given the ongoing impact and risks of the COVID-19 pandemic, private sessions will only be offered virtually for the foreseeable future. This means private sessions will be held by videoconference or on the telephone.  If you have already registered for a private session, please contact us to discuss any accessibility needs you have. This will help us understand how we can best support you to share your experiences with the Royal Commission.

Your identity, and anything you tell us in connection with, or during, a private session is protected from disclosure by law.

The information you provide in a private session is confidential, even after the Royal Commission has ended, except in very specific circumstances. These specific circumstances include where your information relates to contravention of an Australian law and the Royal Commission considers it appropriate to communicate your information to a law enforcement agency.

Questions to help you

Questions to help you

Thinking through the questions below may help you to prepare for your private session.

The questions are only a guide, and you do not have to answer all of them. It is not a problem if you don't remember everything or if you can’t answer every question.

What would you like to tell us about your experience or knowledge of violence, abuse, neglect or exploitation?

  • Are you telling us about violence, abuse, neglect or exploitation that happened to you or someone else? If it is someone else, who is that person and what is your relationship to them?
  • When, or around when, did the violence, abuse, neglect or exploitation happen? If you can, please provide us with a date, or range of dates.
  • Can you tell us what happened?
  • Have any of your family, carers, workers or others provided you with assistance or support related to what happened?

Have you told anyone about your experience/s?

  • Who did you tell?
  • What did you tell them?
  • When did you tell them?
  • Did you put it in writing? If yes, can you provide us with a copy?
  • Was it difficult to report your experience? Can you explain why or why not?

If you reported your experience, what happened in response?

  • How did the person/organisation you reported it to first respond?
  • What else did the person/organisation do about it?
  • Did anything happen after you reported the violence, abuse, neglect or exploitation?
  • Was there any investigation of what happened to you? If so, by who?
  • Did you feel supported when you reported the violence, abuse, neglect or exploitation?
  • Were you offered any support? If yes, did you accept the support? Why/Why not?
  • Have you ever received any redress or compensation?
  • Would you consider the response to reporting good or bad? Can you please explain why?

Are there any suggestions or recommendations you would like to share, including any examples of what worked well or ideas for how things could be done better? You might also like to tell us about any people who have supported you.

Is there anything else you would like to share with the Royal Commission?

What would you like to tell Australia about your hopes for the future?

The average wait time for a private session is between 4 - 6 months, although experiences may vary. There are a number of factors that may impact timing for a private session. This means that one person may wait longer than another, but we will try our best to see everyone within 6 months of their registration. Please contact the private sessions team if you would like to discuss the status of your individual private session request.