How an Ombuds May Help

The Ombuds can help you address and resolve problems by providing the following assistance:

  • Listen to your concerns and answer your questions
  • Untangle, analyze, frame or re-frame your issues
  • Generate alternatives and options
  • Assist with action plans
  • Provide information about available resources and referrals
  • Conduct mediation, facilitation, and shuttle diplomacy, if all parties agree
  • Serve as an effective and positive change agent
  • Be an advocate for fairness
  • Recommend changes in policies and procedures when appropriate
  • Apprise administration of identified patterns and trends
  • Assist with communications

There are limitations on the Office of the Ombuds in order to comply with the Code of Ethics and the Standards of Practice of the International Ombudsman Association. Thus, the Ombuds may NOT:

  • Replace or supersede existing channels for grievances, complaints, or appeals
  • Offer legal advice
  • Breach confidentiality or anonymity
  • Testify in any formal process
  • Serve in a role that may impact on neutrality or independence
  • Conduct formal investigations
  • Mandate policies or formally adjudicate issues
  • Serve as an agent of notice for the University

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