Independent Review into Commonwealth Parliamentary  Workplaces report

Key points

  • The Government has today released the Report by the Sex Discrimination Commissioner Ms Kate Jenkins, Set the Standard: Report on the Independent Review into Commonwealth Parliamentary Workplaces to Government.
  • The Government thanks Ms Jenkins for her Report.
  • The Government will consult with the opposition, minor parties and independents on the recommendations.

As you are aware, following consultation across the Parliament, the Government established the Independent Review into Commonwealth Parliamentary Workplaces. The Review, conducted independently and at arms-length of Government by the Sex Discrimination Commissioner Kate Jenkins, was established to ensure all Commonwealth Parliamentary workplaces are safe and respectful and that our national Parliament reflects best practice in the prevention and handling of bullying, sexual harassment and sexual assault.

The Government has now released the Report into Commonwealth Parliamentary Workplaces undertaken by the Sex Discrimination Commissioner Kate Jenkins and the Australian Human Rights Commission, Set the Standard: Report on the Independent Review into Commonwealth Parliamentary Workplaces to Government.

In keeping with the cross-party support for the establishment of the Review, the Government will be consulting with the opposition, minor parties and independents on the recommendations.

I would like to thank all parliamentarians and staff who contributed to the Review for sharing their personal experiences and assisting the Review to understand our workplaces and inform recommendations for improvement.

Supports available to parliamentarians and MOP(S) Act employees

The Report discusses bullying, sexual harassment and sexual assault, which can cause distress and discomfort.

Additional supports through the Employee Assistance Program (EAP) will continue to be in place for parliamentarians and MOP(S) Act employees during Parliamentary sitting periods.

The EAP is an independent, professional and confidential counselling service available to assist with work, life and health and wellbeing issues. To make an appointment for an onsite session call 1800 945 145 and request the dedicated counsellor for Parliament House. Onsite appointments are available:

  • Tuesday, 30 November 2021 between 9am and 7pm
  • Wednesday, 1 December 2021, between 9am and 7pm
  • Thursday, 2 December 2021, between 9am and 8pm

The EAP continues to be available 24/7 for all MOP(S) Act employees and family/household members. You can find out more about the EAP services on the MaPS website.  In addition to EAP, if you or a colleague need support at any time, there are a number of services available to you.

  • The Parliamentary Workplace Support Service, 1800 PH PWSS (1800 747 977) or SMS to 0487 112 755 is an independent and confidential support and complaint service available 24/7 for current or former MOP(S) Act staff and parliamentarians who have been affected by a serious incident during parliamentary employment.
  • The Parliamentary Support Line, 1800 APH SPT (1800 264 778) provides dedicated 24/7 independent, confidential, anonymous and free counselling and support services for current and former MOP(S) Act employees, parliamentarians, their families, friends and colleagues who have experienced serious incidents in Commonwealth parliamentary workplaces.
  • All MOP(S) Act employees have free access to NewAccess workplaces, a service developed by Beyond Blue. The service provides assistance in dealing with workplace stress and life pressures.
  • Other community supports available include:

The AHRC has also developed the attached resource with additional supports.

Yours sincerely

Ben Morton
Minister Assisting the Prime Minister and Cabinet
Minister for the Public Service
Special Minister of State

Support and self-care guide

Circular 2021/11