Message From The President

Message from the President

December 2023

Nadine Mailloux
Montreal Ombudsman

The year 2023 has not been an easy one, although it has marked the return to "normal" life. Many social issues, such as the housing crisis, have seen the gravity of their impact exacerbated, not to mention the terrible effects of climate crises across the country and around the world.      

The consequences on the lives of our fellow citizens, and particularly those living with one or more vulnerabilities, were immediately felt. 

This certainly makes our role as ombudsman, and that of the people who work on our teams, more complex and even more onerous, but it also makes it all the more fundamental. The way we reach out to people who might not have the reflex to come to us, either because they're intimidated or have no idea that such recourse exists, will make all the difference to the people we succeed in helping. The disaffiliation of a whole section of our communities with institutions is undoubtedly a direct consequence of a number of societal factors, but it also represents an additional challenge for the ombudsman wishing to reach these communities. 

As we approach the end of 2023, a year which has undoubtedly worn many of us down, or at the very least tested our resilience, I can confirm that there is hope...!!!     

Yes, there is hope! I'm thinking of the Northwest Territories Ombudsman team, which mobilized within hours of being evacuated. And of the colleagues of the Alberta Ombudsman team, who welcomed them into their offices to enable them to continue playing their fundamental role. 

And I'm thinking of all of you, ombudsman, your team members, investigators and all the others, who work hard every day in a field that's not for everyone. But it certainly brings together people whose qualities of heart, discernment and dedication are beyond doubt. So, all of you, please stop for a minute. Understand the full measure of what you accomplish every day and be proud! So proud! Because you make a difference.     

May the upcoming holiday season be a time for you to breathe, to take a step back, and to appreciate the small and large gestures that do good, that reassure, that soothe, that cost nothing, that are not publicized, that come from the heart, and that sometimes can change everything. For it is these gestures that we'll remember in the end.      

I wish you a wonderful Holiday Season!!! 

Nadine Mailloux