May 26, 2015

The Citadel Updates Terms of Reference for Ombuds Program

The Military College of South Carolina has published a memorandum that, "describes the role of the ombudsperson ... and the methods by which cadets, students, faculty, and staff may utilize the ombudsperson process."  The document clearly explains the Citadel's Ombuds will keep information confidential and assert a privilege if necessary:

5. Notice.
a. The Ombudsperson does not serve as an office of notice or record for anything other than the Clery Act. Pursuant to the Clery Act, the Office of the Ombudsperson will report only statistical information to the Department of Public Safety. The office does not conduct formal investigations nor does it maintain or keep records. If the Ombudsperson deems it proper, he or she will refer visitors to the office most appropriate to his/her concern or complaint.
b. Providing information to the Office of the Ombudsperson does not suffice to put the College on official notice for a violation of law or policy. If the visitor wants to put the college on official notice for a policy or law violation, complaint or concern, he or she must contact his/her supervisor, manager or designated office of record for the college. In addition, the visitor is responsible for adhering to timelines or deadlines as stated per policy when filing formal grievances or appealing decisions.
c. The Office of the Ombudsperson will strongly assert any and all applicable privileges to resist participation in formal or legal proceedings. Use of the office is voluntary. The Office of the Ombudsperson accepts matters with the understanding that the user of the office will not depose or subpoena the ombudsperson.

The current Ombuds at the Citadel are Lt. Col Robert Pickering, Lt. Col. Elizabeth Connor, and Maj. Shamus Gillen. The memo was signed on April 22, 2015. (Citadel Memorandum.)

Related posts: Election Results for IOA BoardIOA Posts Agenda for 2011 ConferenceInterviews with Leading Ombuds Give Perspective on Future of Profession; Longtime Ombuds at the Citadel Retires.

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