Schedule 5

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Hearing venue courtesy

1. When in a hearing venue, there are basic courtesies to observe that will help ensure the court process is not interrupted or distracted.

  • Please attend suitably and professionally dressed.
  • Where possible, sit in the area provided for the media.
  • You may not eat or drink in the hearing venue.
  • You must stand when the members of the court enter or leave the hearing venue.
  • If entering or leaving a venue while a hearing is in progress, please do so quietly.
  • Remain as quiet as possible in the hearing venue.

Sometimes a judge might order that no one enter or leave the venue, to ensure quiet and focus. This might happen during the testimony of a particular witness, during an address by counsel or when the judge is giving a decision.

If the judge addresses you during the proceeding and you need to respond, you should stand and address the judge as, "Your Honour".

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Media identification

1. Before the court begins the hearing please provide suitable identification to the court’s hearing manager showing that you are a member of a recognised media organisation. Suitable identification is an identification card or letter from your organisation along with your personal identification (eg, a driver licence). Please do not be offended by this requirement. It is designed to ensure that only members of recognised media organisations can benefit from the use of the press benches and other privileges accorded to such members (eg, those relating to the use of electronic communication devices).

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Electronic communication devices

1. Electronic communication devices include cellphones, pagers, personal digital assistants and computers with electronic communication capabilities. As a general rule such devices should be turned off before entering a hearing venue and they must be turned off if they have an audible call alert. They must not be used for voice calls within the venue.

Electronic communication devices may, however, be used by members of recognised media organisations for silent electronic communication of information, subject to the restrictions set out in the Environmental Court’s In-Court Media Coverage Guidelines 2011. They must be used as unobtrusively as possible and in such a manner as to not interfere in any way with the running of the hearing.

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