What to Expect

Standards of Practice

The UMB ombudsperson is a member of the International Ombudsman Association (IOA) and practices according to the IOA Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice.

The ombudsperson holds all communications with those seeking assistance in strict confidence and does not disclose confidential communications unless given permission to do so. The only exceptions to confidentiality are where there appears to be imminent risk of serious harm, or where disclosure is required by law or University Policy.

The ombudsperson, as a designated neutral, remains unaligned and impartial. The ombudsperson does not engage in any situation that could create a conflict of interest.

The ombudsperson, as an informal resource, does not participate in any formal adjudicative or administrative procedure related to concerns brought to her attention.

The ombudsperson is independent in structure, function, and appearance to the highest degree possible within the organization.

Read about the ombudsperson's certification and professional standards.

The ombudsperson will:

  • Listen
  • Offer information about University and departmental policies and procedures
  • Help people examine options for resolving concerns
  • Help facilitate access to other resources
  • Provide mediation or shuttle diplomacy when requested and appropriate
  • Respect privacy

The ombudsperson will not:


  • Serve as an advocate for any person or group
  • Testify or participate in formal procedures
  • File formal complaints or investigate concerns
  • Guide visitors in a particular direction
  • Give legal advice
  • Take formal complaints
  • Serve as an agent of notice for the University
  • Establish, change, or waive policies
  • Offer psychological counseling
  • Keep written records after a consultation is completed

Important note: The ombudsperson is not authorized to accept notice of claims against the University.