Guiding Principles

All communication with the Ombuds Program is understood to be confidential.  The ombudsperson will not confirm communicating with any party or disclose information without that party's permission, except in cases in which there is an imminent risk of serious harm to self or others.  Please note that email is not considered confidential.  If you have an interest in ensuring the confidentiality of our communications, be mindful of what information you share via email, and consider using the telephone or having a face-to-face conversation instead.
The ombudsperson is neutral and does not serve as an advocate for any members or offices of the UO community, including the University itself.  As such, the ombudsperson will hear your concerns and openly explore options with you without bias.  The ombudsperson will not draw conclusions or prescribe particular solutions regarding any situation, but instead will work with you to explore the range of possible approaches.  This allows the you to remain in control of the approach or option that you choose. 
The Ombuds Program operates informally, has no authority or role in any formal process on campus, and does not accept notice on behalf of the University.  You must pursue alternative complaint avenues if you wish to obligate the University to respond in any way.  The Ombuds is a completely voluntary and off-the-record resource.  It is designed to complement other formal and informal services but not to replace or duplicate them or their processes. 

The ombudsperson reports directly to the UO President and works outside of traditional structures and channels to provide information and advice.  No employee of the university can compel the ombudsperson to take action or to release information.  The Ombuds Program has a charter that guarantees its independence from ties to other programs or offices.  While the ombudsperson may share information with other important programs and offices, it only occurs with the permission of the visitor.