The University of Western Ontario

 

Ombuds Office
Annual Report
2004-2005




 

INTRODUCTION

 

The mandate of the Ombuds Office is to "carry out impartial investigations of complaints or grievances about any aspect of university life at the request of any student, or upon the Ombudsperson's own motion." Therefore it may come as a surprise to know that the office carries out relatively few investigations! Of the 529 issues raised by the 467 students who used the service between August 1, 2004 and July 31, 2005, only 80 issues 15 per cent - were the subject of intervention by the office, and not all interventions resulted in recommendations or findings. The remaining issues were handled by providing the student with information or advice.

A secondary mandate of the office is to "serve as a general information centre for students and other members of the university community about university resources, procedures, policies, practices and rules." In addition to the students who sought advice and information, 98 non-students sought advice and information about 104 distinct issues.

The purpose of this report is to show the university community in a broad way how and what the Ombuds Office did in 2004-05: What kind of issues were raised? How did the actions of the office affect the outcome? Are there serious problems being faced by students, staff or faculty, and steps the University should take to remedy them? Because we work in confidence, we tell most of the story in numbers, or through situations which have been made so general or otherwise modified that everyone's confidentiality is protected.

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