Guiding Principles

The University Ombuds Office operates under the Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice of the International Ombudsman Association and provides services based on the following

Guiding Principles:

Independence
The Ombuds Office is independent of the university administration in structure, function, and appearance. The University Ombudsperson reports to the Executive Committee of the University Senate and the Provost for budgetary and administrative purposes only but has access to senior administrators in order to convey perceived issues and trends on campus.  The Ombudsperson does not keep records for the University and will only furnish anonymous aggregate statistical data in annual reports.

Confidentiality
The Ombudsperson holds all communications with those seeking assistance in the strictest confidence allowed by law. The identity of visitors and the substance of concerns raised will not be shared without consent.  This commitment to confidentiality is unwavering; the only exception occurs where there appears to be imminent risk of serious harm, and where there is no other reasonable option.

Informality
The Ombudsperson does not participate in any formal adjudicative or administrative procedure or investigations, issue findings, or make or overturn administrative decisions. Contact with the ombudsperson is totally voluntary and not a required step in any AU grievance process or university procedure.

Neutrality
The Ombudsperson impartially considers the interests of all parties involved in a situation, in order to assist the parties in reaching mutually acceptable agreements that are fair, equitable, and consistent with the mission and policies of Auburn University.  The ombudsperson will not serve as an advocate for the university or an individual.

Last Updated: Oct. 11, 2011

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