(1) Subject to subsection (3), a hearing must be held in public.
Participation by telephone etc.
(2) If, when a hearing is in public, a person participates by a means allowed under section 153, the Tribunal must take such steps as are reasonably necessary to ensure the public nature of the hearing is preserved.
(3) The Tribunal may, on its own initiative or on the application of a party, if it is satisfied that it is appropriate to do so, direct that a hearing, or part of a hearing, be held in private and give directions as to the persons who may be present.
Concerns of Aboriginal peoples or Torres Strait Islanders
(4) In determining if a hearing or part of a hearing is to be held in private, the Tribunal must have due regard to the cultural and customary concerns of Aboriginal peoples and Torres Strait Islanders.
Application to a native title application inquiry
(5) This section does not apply to a hearing held in the course of a native title application inquiry.