In addition to serving as President of ABO, Fornazaro has also served as Ombudsman at São Paulo’s City Council and Advisor to various organizations that defend the interests of the citizens. She was an Ombudsman for the City of São Paulo from 2006 to 2010 and CEO of Fundação de Proteção e Direitos do Consumidor do Estado de São Paulo (Foundation for Protection of the Consumer Rights of São Paulo State).
As an introduction to her remarks at the IOA conference, Fornazaro says:
Building citizenship in Brazil is a recent process as opposed to the development of Eastern society. Effectively, it was from 1988’s Constitution that Brazilians started to realize that they would be able to fully participate in the actions of the Country. It isn’t about considering the citizenship as just enjoying political rights anymore, but giving a minimal and irreducible core of basic rights, among which that of taking part and even influence the fate of public or private organizations. To be conscious of rights and obligations is to participate actively in all the issues that involve your day to day life and not to be silent in face of the attempts to subdue them or consent to abuses of power. A citizen’s participation in the Brazilian society is imperative, but still far from being the same as other countries in America. We have the Ombudsmen's Offices in Brazil in this context as a channel of communications between the citizens and the organizations, representing their lawful rights.
Based on the Swedish Ombudsman model, it has gained its own shape and a specific model, whose main task is to receive the citizen’s demands and make their voice be heard inside the organizations. Its main features: To be accessible to the citizen, to exercise the citizenship in a strengthen way; to collaborate to consumers, users, vendors and collaborators’ fulfillment and confidence; agility to solve problems, with answers that are clear, straight to the point and conclusive. The Associação Brasileira de Ouvidores (Brazilian Ombudsmen Association), established in 1995, represents the Ombudsmen and acts across the country is a non-profit entity, with no political or partisan ties and its goal is to develop, spread and strengthen the ombudsmen’s offices in Brazil through the professional qualification of ombudsmen in the public and private sectors.(IOA Plenary Info.)
Related posts: FCO President to Speak at Brazilian Ombuds Conference; IOA Representative Keynotes Conference of Brazilian Ombuds.