Options for engaging with the Royal Commission into Defence and Veteran Suicide

This fact sheet is about the ways you can share your experience and recommendations with the Royal Commission.

Make a submission (a written record of your experience and recommendations)

What do I do?

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Complete a paper copy of the Submission form and send it in by email or by post. The paper form can be downloaded from the Royal Commission website.


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Complete the Royal Commission submission form online via their website at: https://defenceveteransuicide.royalcommission.gov.au/


A verbal recording of your submission. DAVLS lawyers can help you with this.

You can attach supporting documents to your submission but are not required to.

How public will my information be?

You can tell the Royal Commission how public you want your submission to be. You can ask for it to be:

  1. Public – it may appear on the Royal Commission website and in other public reports with your name.
  2. Public without your name – it may appear on the Royal Commission website and in other public reports without your name or any identifying information such as dates or place names.
  3. Not made public – it will not be put on the Royal Commission website and will not be quoted or used in any public documents

Your submission may be made public unless you request that it not be made public, or the Royal Commission considers it should not be made public.

Participate in a private session with a Commissioner

What do I do?

  1. Request a private session via the Royal Commission’s website. The Defence and Veterans Legal Service can help you request a session.
  2. The Royal Commission will decide if you get a Private Session and will let you know.
  3. If you are given a Private Session, prepare what you want to say.
  4. Share your experience and recommendations verbally in a meeting with a Commissioner.

How public will my information be?

This is the most private way to share information

Only the people who work at the Royal Commission, and anyone you ask to come, will know you participated in a private session, or what you said

You have the right to have a support person of your choice come to the private session with you.

Share your experience as a witness at a Public Hearing

What do I do?

  1. The Royal Commission will invite some people to give evidence at Public Hearings.
  2. If you are asked, and agree, you will prepare a statement about your experience with a lawyer. The Defence and Veterans Legal Service can help you find a lawyer.
  3. Share your experience at a Public Hearing.

How public will my information be?

Public hearings are public and livestreamed on the internet. Everyone who is there, or watching online, can listen to what you say. A transcript will be available on the Royal Commission website afterwards.

You can keep your identity private. To do this, ask that your name is not used, and your face not be shown on the internet.

Who can I contact if I have more questions?

Call us on 1800 33 1800 for free legal advice.

The Defence and Veterans Legal Service is independent and separate from the Royal Commission, the Department of Defence, and the Department of Veterans Affairs. Any conversation between yourself and a lawyer will be confidential and protected by legal privilege.


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Publication date: 09 June 2022
Publication type: Fact sheet
Language: English