The Justice and Electoral Select Committee has invited public submissions on the Privacy (Information Sharing) Bill. This Bill seeks to make two key changes to the Privacy Act 1993. First, it seeks to widen the exceptions for the use and disclosure of personal information when there is a "serious threat" to public health or safety, or to the life or health of an individual, by removing the (current) requirement for such a threat to also be "imminent". Second, the Bill seeks to insert a new mechanism whereby information sharing arrangements can be approved by Order in Council: "Approved information sharing agreements will enable the use and sharing of information between and within agencies delivering public services by modifying or clarifying the application of the information privacy principles". The Bill sets out the required content for information sharing agreements, and the process for approval, which includes consultation with the Privacy Commissioner. Submissions are due by 23 March 2012 and further information is available here.