The Ombudsman helps people deal with central and local government in New Zealand.
They handle complaints about government agencies, seek resolution and carry out investigations and inspections.
They give feedback and guidance to agencies to help them improve, and initiate wider investigations where they see the need.
The Ombudsman is independent from both government and the public.
They have five main jobs:
1. Fair treatment by government agencies. If you think you have been treated badly by a government agency, and you aren’t happy with their response to your complaint, the Ombudsman might be able to help you.
2. Official information requests. You can ask for information from a government agency or a Minister. If you’re unhappy with the response to your information request, you can complain to the Ombudsman.
3. Listening to reports of serious wrongdoing. If you think someone at your workplace (at a public or private organisation) has done something very wrong, you can talk to the Ombudsman. This is called whistleblowing or making a protected disclosure.
4. Monitoring places of detention. The Ombudsman monitors places of detention such as prisons and mental health facilities, to make sure they are looking after people in the right way.
5. Making sure disabled people are treated fairly. The Ombudsman makes sure the government is making the rights in the Disability Convention real for disabled people.
You can find out more about what the Ombudsman does: ombudsman.parliament.nz