Government establishes Royal Commission into Home Insulation Program

12 December 2013

Joint Media Release

Minister for the Arts
The Hon George Brandis QC

Minister for the Environment
The Hon Greg Hunt MP

The Royal Commission into the Home Insulation Program has been established today by the Governor-General.

Mr Ian Hanger AM QC has been appointed as the Commissioner.

In line with the commitment made by the Government, the Royal Commission will inquire and report into the deaths, serious injuries and impacts on longstanding home insulation businesses alleged to have arisen from the Program.

The Royal Commission will ensure that the public interest is served by fully exploring whether the tragic deaths of Matthew Fuller, Rueben Barnes, Mitchell Sweeney and Marcus Wilson could have been avoided.

The Royal Commission has also been asked been asked to inquire into:

  • the decision making processes in establishing and implementing the Program, including how workplace health and safety and other risks were identified, assessed and managed;
  • whether the former government was given or sought any advice, warnings or recommendations by industry representatives, regulatory authorities or other Commonwealth, state or territory agencies, and what action was taken;
  • the effects of the Program on the families of the four young men and longstanding home insulation businesses; and

Importantly, the Royal Commission will also report on whether the Australian Government should change its laws, policies, practices, processes, procedures or systems to seek to prevent the recurrence of any failure that the Royal Commission may identify.

The Royal Commission has been asked to submit its report by 30 June 2014 and will take into account the findings of previous coronial inquests and other inquiries into the Home Insulation Program.

The Letters Patent, issued today by the Governor-General to establish the Royal Commission and appoint Mr Ian Hanger AM QC as Commissioner, is attached.

Mr Ian Hanger AM QC is an eminent lawyer from Brisbane, Queensland. Mr Hanger was admitted to practice as a Barrister in 1968, and is highly regarded as a leading commercial dispute resolution practitioner, and has extensive experience conducting and appearing before commissions of inquiry.

Mr Hanger was appointed Queen’s Counsel in 1984 and a Member of the Order of Australia in 2007.He holds a Bachelor of Arts and of Laws from the University of Queensland and a Master of Laws from the Queensland University of Technology.

More Information about the Royal Commission is available online: