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Office of Ombuds Services

The Office of Ombuds Services provides the University of Houston faculty and staff with an informal mechanism for resolving workplace conflicts and addressing questions and concerns related to their employment with the University. To ensure the highest quality and most effective services, the Faculty and Staff Ombudsperson is independent, neutral, and maintains confidentiality. The only exception to this privilege of confidentiality is where there appears to be imminent risk of serious harm.

The Ombudsperson Does:

The Ombudsperson strives to promote fairness and foster a positive work environment by offering a number of mechanisms for early conflict resolution and problem-solving including:

  • Listening to faculty and staff members’ concerns and complaints regarding workplace and employment issues
  • Providing information and assistance in accessing and interpreting University policies and procedures
  • Making referrals to appropriate University resources
  • Helping faculty and staff analyze complaints by identifying issues and outlining available options
  • Coaching faculty and staff in addressing and managing conflict
  • Facilitating communication and mediating conflict between disputing parties
  • Reviewing and analyzing trends in concerns and complaints
  • Making recommendations to the President and Provost regarding changes to University policies and procedures that may eliminate or reduce recurring workplace problems, enhance the effectiveness of University resources, or increase the quality of work life for University employees

The Ombudsperson Does Not:

Because of the informal, neutral, and confidential nature of ombuds services, the ombudsperson does not:

  • Represent faculty or staff in any formal hearings, processes, or procedures
  • Engage in administrative decisions
  • Determine the merits of a faculty or staff member’s complaint
  • Conduct formal investigations
  • Provide legal representation or advice
  • Provide psychological counseling

NOTE: The Ombudsperson does not address allegations of unlawful discrimination, harassment or sexual misconduct.  Any allegations of unlawful discrimination, harassment or sexual misconduct must be filed with the Office of Equal Opportunity Services in accordance with the University’s Sexual Misconduct Policy (SAM 01.D.08) or the University’s Discrimination and Harassment Policy (SAM 01.D.07).