An Ombudsperson for Our Staff

For several years, there has been interest in establishing an ombudsperson to represent UT staff members.  As I have expressed at Staff Council meetings and other venues, I am open-minded about this.  I believe it has been helpful to have an ombudsperson serving students and faculty.

But I want to make sure that such a move would be consistent with Staff Council priorities.  I am aware that the Staff Council leadership had concerns about the structure of a previous proposal for an ombudsperson, as well as how it would be implemented.

As a result, I asked Staff Council Chair Ben Bond to review the subject and make a recommendation.  In January the Staff Council created an ad hoc committee to study the staff grievance process and the role of an ombudsperson.  The committee is chaired by Staff Council Representative Jennifer L. Smith of the Texas Interdisciplinary Plan.  The committee was charged with proposing options for establishing a staff ombudsperson at UT.  Its final report is due to the Staff Council in May.

I look forward to hearing from the Staff Council and reviewing its recommendation in the weeks ahead.

Bill's Signature

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  1. This sounds like a promising development that will bring UT in line with many other research universities that have organizational ombuds programs for their entire campus. The predominant model of university ombuds programs is a unified service for faculty, staff and students. Rarely does an issue or conflict involve only one of these subgroups. Therefore, it makes sense to have ombudsperson who are able to work with all constituents. Most university ombuds also practice to the International Ombudsman Association Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice which mandate four essential characteristics: confidentiality, neutrality, independence and informality. For these reasons, university ombuds should not be seen as “representing” individuals or the institution.

    • Workinghard4themoney says:

      Promoting and insuring equal oppertunities and services are provided to all staff no matter what position or titles held, protects all employees and students rights at the University of Texas at Austin and inhances ethical and fair business practices, working conditions, learning and safety enviroments.

      Its great President Powers stated he is open minded. UT Students and faculty members have current benefits of the use of a UT Ombudsman Sevices set up soley for them.

      Support Staff Employees needs President Powers and the current UT Staff Council Members to insure the same benefits to all UT Staff Employees as other universities across America are doing. UT Staff Council Members and Support Staff Employees can network with other Universities Faculty and Student and Employees Ombudsman Programs Leaders to make our one of the best.

      Its all about looking at the bigger picture of issues and problems and seeing the entire situations being fairly and adquately addressed and resolved in a fair and practical manner, protecting and valuing the rights of all its workers and the University as well.

      As we progress and adapt to changes in the days of this life ahead of us, we with courage and those who want to leave a greater legacy and stepping stones for humanity, are strong enough and care enough to open their eyes and ears and speak out of truth , and in turn do the right thing. Someone depends on me everyday, and I depend on someone everyday and together we make strides for a new day and a better tomorrow.

      My sincere hope is that the UT Support Staff Employees are truly valued at University of Texas at Austin, and we can count on the engagement of full support from President Powers and the UT Staff Council Members create a UT Support Staff Employees Ombudsman Program in 2010.

      A Quote:

      NEVER GIVE UP!!!