Public hearings will be held throughout the Inquiry.  Through public hearings Commissioners will hear evidence and information about abuse in State care and faith-based institutions.

Each public hearing is part of a wider investigation examining a theme or particular institution.

The evidence heard at public hearings will help the Inquiry make independent, unbiased findings to inform our recommendations to the Government.

What to expect

Attending a hearing

There will be many public hearings during the Inquiry, each running for between one to three weeks.

All public hearings will be held in venues open and accessible to the public.

You can attend as a member of the public or watch a live stream on our website.

At a hearing

Commissioners will be looking at:

  • Why people were taken into care
  • What abuse and neglect occurred
  • Why it happened and the effect it had
  • What was learned and what changes were made
  • How the systems are working now
  • How things can be done better

For witnesses

Detail about the hearing process will be provided by a member of our legal counsel.

For details about expenses for witnesses at public hearings, see our Witness Expenses Policy.

For media

If you are a journalist and would like to attend and/or report on a Royal Commission public hearing, you must adhere to the Media Guidelines which include applying to attend/report within five business days. 

Media enquiries: 027 298 2094,

Upcoming hearings

 State Redress - Evidence from survivors of abuse

Monday 21 September to Tuesday 6 October

Survivors who have sought redress for abuse suffered in State care will give evidence at this hearing, as will lawyers who have dealt with government departments on behalf of claimants.

 State Redress - Witnesses for the crown

Monday 19 October to Tuesday 3 November

The hearing has been split into two phases. Witnesses for the Crown will give evidence during this phase.

 Faith-Based Redress

Monday 30 November to Friday 11 December

Have you experienced or do you have information about abuse in faith-based institutions such as a church or religious school between 1950-1999?

Recent hearings

 Contextual hearing

29 October to 8 November 2019

At the Contextual hearing the Inquiry heard from 29 witnesses on topics that provide context to the wide ranging scope of the Inquiry and that the Inquiry will explore in more detail over the next few years.

 Preliminary hearing

25 June 2019

Our first hearing where Commissioners and Consel talked about why the Royal Commission was established, how we will do our work, private sessions, future public hearings and research.

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