Our Role

How Might an Ombuds Help?

  • By helping to surface information when people are afraid to come forward.
  • By helping to clarify and thus to resolve a conflict.
  • By helping to develop and evaluate options or courses of action, and assisting visitors or callers in knowing how to pursue an option.
  • By identifying dispute resolution alternatives for people who seek options and by referring individuals to appropriate services.
  • By looking into a problem informally (with permission) and, when appropriate, presenting recommendations to the visitor or others.
  • By providing “shuttle diplomacy,” individually talking with the parties involved, going back and forth between them until they are either able to talk together or they have a better understanding of the dispute so that an agreement between them can be reached.
  • By mediating disputes by bringing together the parties involved,  in a formal way, in order to assist them in reaching their own settlement.
  • By recommending systems change to appropriate individuals.
  • By coaching visitors and callers on how an issue or concern may be presented more effectively.