Structure and teams.
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Chief Ombudsman Peter Boshier is supported by:
- Deputy Ombudsman Bridget Hewson
- Chief Legal Advisor Stuart McGilvray
- Chief Financial Officer Meaw-Fong Phang
- more than 100 staff located in Auckland and Wellington.
Deputy Ombudsman Bridget Hewson is directly responsible to the Chief Ombudsman for the strategic direction and positioning of the Ombudsman New Zealand and ensuring the work, functions and performance outcomes expected by Parliament are delivered.
Four Assistant Ombudsmen report directly to her, in their management of the following groups:
- Strategy, Engagement and Development Group
- Complaints Resolution Group
- Systemic Monitoring Group
- Corporate Services
These operations are supported by the Finance team, headed by Chief Financial Officer Meaw-Fong Phang, and the Legal team, headed by Stuart McGilvray.
Strategy, Engagement and Development Group
Senior Assistant Ombudsman Emma Leach provides policy and practice leadership across all operational work undertaken by the Ombudsman New Zealand, including the design and development of new Ombudsman jurisdictions.
She also leads the Strategy, Engagement and Development Group, made up of the following teams.
The Strategic Advice team provides strategic policy and practice advice, both within the Ombudsman’s offices and to external agencies and groups.
The Learning and Agency Guidance team provides training to Ombudsman staff and external agencies, as well as guidance for external agencies.
The Rōpū Māori Hononga Hapori (Māori and Community Engagement team) provides community engagement and outreach, supports Pūhara Mana Tangata and provides guidance for Te Ao Māori practice within the Ombudsman’s offices.
The Communications team looks after media, publications and the website.
The International Development and Engagement team works across Asia and the Pacific to support and learn from other Ombudsmen.
The Disability Rights team supports the Chief Ombudsman as part of New Zealand’s Independent Monitoring Mechanism (IMM) under the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
The Children in Care Complaints team specialises in handling complaints from, and about, children in care, which is a developing role.
Complaints Resolution Group
Acting Assistant Ombudsman Chloe Longdin-Prisk leads the Complaints Resolution Group, which investigates and resolves complaints about government agencies’ administrative and official information decisions.
The Intake and Early Assistance team is the first point of contact for anyone with a query or complaint.
The Early Resolution team work to resolve complaints without a formal investigation, where possible.
The Investigations and Resolution teams conduct complex and more formal investigations.
Systemic Monitoring Group
Assistant Ombudsman Stephanie Winson leads the Systemic Monitoring Group, which focuses on monitoring, analysing and proactively intervening when systemic issues appear to be arising within agencies subject to the Ombudsman’s jurisdiction.
The OPCAT Inspection teams work supports the Ombudsman’s role under the United Nations Optional Protocol to the Convention Against Torture to monitor and inspect places of detention to ensure people are treated humanely.
The Systemic Improvement Monitoring and Resolution team identify and assess matters of possible significant and systemic concern and proactively intervene in order to achieve improvement across the public sector and seek early resolution, where possible.
The Official Information Practice Investigations team focuses on proactively investigating government agencies’ official information structures, practices and procedures.
The Systemic Improvement Investigations team conduct significant and system-wide investigations into public sector administration and decision-making.
Assistant Ombudsman Michelle King leads the Corporate Services Group, which provides support for the work of the Ombudsman through its people and capability, business services, information knowledge and technology and security.
The People and Capability team looks after the human resources function, including learning and development, health and safety, organisation design and culture.
The Business Services team look after the day-to-day running of the offices, including property, accommodation, office facilities, external contractors, suppliers and service providers.
The Information Communications Technology (ICT) team looks after the Ombudsman’s ICT and systems operations and infrastructure.
The Information and Knowledge Management (IKM) team look after the Ombudsman’s information, data and research services.