Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Professors think LGO should not investigate individual complaints.

"If ombudsmen are to have a greater impact on ‘getting decision-making right first time.' their focus should shift from the resolution of all individual complaints to a more strategic focus concentrating on the small number of complaints that are of significance to parties beyond those in dispute and that appear to involve systemic failures. Resources freed up as a result should be used to bolster policy,analytic and communication functions. Ombudsmen should move from predominantly facing the public, to predominantly facing administrators."

Brian Thompson, Richard Kirkham and Trevor Buck. (The Ombudsman issue 38, partially repeated in an article in issue 39 by Chriss Gill)

I would argue that If ombudsmen were meant to have a greater impact on ‘getting decision-making right first time' they should have been given some teeth so they could force councils to face the consequences of their maladministration. The LGO don't want any teeth because they don't want councils to face the consequences of maladministration and from this article neither do the Professors.

I would be happy if the LGO and councils could get it right at all let alone the first time.

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