May 14, 2008

Halliburton Asserts Ombuds Privilege

As it has in the past, Halliburton touts the work of its in-house Dispute Resolution Program (DRP) in its 2007 Corporate Sustainability Report. The DRP is administered by Ombuds with strong support from senior management. What makes Halliburton's latest Report remarkable is the public assertion of a privilege:
The DRP is administered by ombudsmen who adhere strictly to the code of ethics and standards of practice of the International Ombudsman Association. The code is defined by three key principles: neutrality, independence and confidentiality. Communication with the DRP is considered privileged and, as such, does not constitute notice to the company. [Emphasis added.]

The Fortune 500 multinational thus becomes the most prominent private sector entity to endorse the most significant legal protection for the Ombuds profession. (Halliburton Corporate Sustainability Report; more about Halliburton's DRP at

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