Tute Exercise 5 – The Goolding Inquiry

Independent Minister Fergus Williams has been in talks with Opposition Leader Dan Millar to form a new government, the first day of the Goolding Inquiry heard.

The Inquiry is investigating the media leaks and the Government’s involvement in the suicide death of National Health Services housing campaigner, Douglas Tickell.

Opposition Media Advisor Malcolm Tucker said Williams had “already opened a private channel to Dan Millar”.

“He wants to talk about possibly setting up a coalition with him, because he knows very well that this coalition government that he is lumbered with is being torn to pieces,”  Mr Tucker said.

Williams said he admitted meetings took place with Mr Millar, but did not specify what they were for.

“I was part of a team who had very general, non-committal discussions with, amongst others, Mr Miller,” Mr Williams said.

He said it was difficult to steer policy ideas through the Department of Social Affairs and Citizenship (DoSAC).

“There is one person in particular, who is rather inept, and has hampered a lot of our initiatives,” Mr Williams said. “They are a stubborn blockage.”

For support, phone Lifeline on 13 11 14 or Beyond Blue on 1300 22 4636


  1. What was your main consideration in selecting your angle?
    Making sure it was newsworthy and attention grabbing, something that would allow me to uphold my role as part of the fourth estate.
  2. What was the main legal implication in covering this story?
    Ensuring nothing was defamatory in the piece.
  3. What was the main ethical consideration in covering this story?
    Getting both sides of the story and placing the support numbers on the bottom of the piece as suicide is mentioned.
  4. To take this story further, who would you contact and why?           Dan Millar, to confirm whether these talks with Williams took place.



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