Dalhousie University to open ombudsperson’s office

Dalhousie University to open ombudsperson’s office

April 5, 2016

Published April 1, 2016 – 8:33pm
Last Updated April 1, 2016 – 8:35pm

Dalhousie University and the Dalhousie Student Union will create a new ombudsperson’s office starting this fall.

Details were released in a memo Thursday from Anne Forrestall, acting vice-provost of student affairs, and Dan Nicholson, student union president.

The ombudsperson “will provide an accessible, independent, impartial and confidential office through which students may pursue the fair and equitable resolution of any university-related concern,” the memo said.

That could mean anything from an academic disciplinary issue to a dispute with particular university office or service.

The office can also recommend changes to university policies, regulations and procedures based on trends in complaints.

Dalhousie had such an office as recently as 2012-13, but it was a part-time position staffed by students. The new position will be full time and filled by someone with a background in conflict resolution and experience in university administration.

The ombudsperson will report annually to the presidents of the university, the students union and the senate.

Setting up the office was one of 39 recommendations made by a task force formed in the wake of the Dal dentistry school scandal.

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Forum of Canadian Ombudsman