Camosun's Ombudsman is an impartial, independent person whose major function is to provide confidential and informal assistance to students. The Ombudsman receives and investigates student complaints, reports on findings, and helps achieve just and equitable settlements. The Ombudsman is an advocate for fairness and an agent of change.
What is an Ombudsman?
Camosun's Ombuds Office provides a safe, comfortable, confidential environment for students to discuss conflicts, complaints or disputes. The Ombudsman will help you develop strategies and options for resolving your issues, as well as provide information to you regarding policies and procedures. The purpose of an Ombuds office is to ensure that each problem receives an impartial review.
How can the Ombudsman help?
Some of the roles of an Ombudsman are:
- Listen and discuss questions, concerns, and complaints
- Help evaluate various options to address concerns
- Answer questions or help find others who can
- Explain policies and procedures
- Facilitate communication between people
- Advise individuals about steps to resolve problems informally
- Advise individuals about formal and administrative options
- Mediate disputes to seek "win-win" resolution of problems
- Make appropriate referrals when informal options don't work
- Point out patterns of problems/complaints to administrators
Ombudsman is a Scandinavian word from the 19th century that originally referred to a public official who investigated complaints by citizens against the government or its functionaries.
The Swedish word Ombudsman is gender-neutral as the "man" translates to the "people" that are assisted by the Ombudsman.
You will also hear the term Ombuds used when referring to either the office or the person.