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Are petitions important? Do they make a difference?

The answer is yes and maybe! Here's why...
Petition, petitions

Yes,  petitions can be important enough to make a difference, however it depends on what action you want taken regarding the petition and who you are petitioning.

If you are trying to get a business to change, a petition can be really effective, together with doing other things, like getting media attention.

Just creating a petition itself can get media attention which in turn could put pressure on an elected representative or business and they will need to respond to it.

​Petitions are good if you are starting a campaign and you need to show it has public support. A petition will just be one part of the campaign.

Petitions to Parliament

A petition to parliament is one of the only direct ways an individual can ask the House of Representatives (House) to do something.

The House won’t always do what you have asked but, by petitioning, your concern is brought to the attention of the House and the Minister.

The subject of the petition must be in relation to a matter in which the House has the power to act.  It must be a federal (nationally controlled) rather than a state or local matter and one involving legislation or government administration.

However if you do not follow the rules for filing parliamentary petitions the Petitions Committee will reject it before it goes anywhere! See here for the Rules.

States & Territories

Each State and Territory has it's own arrangements to petition parliamentary assemblies. Check out the process for Queensland.

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