Welcome


The Emory Ombuds Office is new and here for you as a confidential, safe space where you can discuss issues and where those communications are kept confidential to the fullest extent possible. A resource for faculty, staff, and students, we invite Emory community members at every level to bring us concerns about misunderstandings, incivility, or possible wrongdoing. Our role is to promote mutual respect, civility, and ethical conduct, and to alert university leadership to concerns that might justify policy changes.

COVID-19


Emory University is closely monitoring the COVID-19 outbreak and remains committed to the health and safety of our students, faculty, staff, and visitors. On March 11, 2020, the University announced that Spring Break would be extended for students until March 22, 2020, after which the University will transition to remote learning for graduate and undergraduate classes for the remainder of the semester. Residential learning will also be suspended for the remainder of the semester. However, the University otherwise remains open.

To keep our community informed during this rapidly evolving situation, the University has created the Coronavirus Updates for the Emory Community page, which provides regular updates on travel advisories, phone numbers, links, and support resources to reflect the most recent guidance and developments. A link to that page is provided below.

If  you have questions or concerns during this difficult time and are not sure where to turn, the Office of the Ombuds is here to help. We remain open for visits by telephone and videoconference. For more information or to schedule a visit, please email us at Ombuds@emory.edu

Coronavirus Updates

How We Work

Ours is an informal approach, by design. We listen and will explore all options with you, including those that might fall outside the scope of any existing policies, formal procedures, or jurisdictions. In this way, we address the needs of individuals with unusual concerns or those who choose to resolve conflicts informally. You may initiate a formal complaint using another Emory office at any time during a conflict. We are an excellent starting point, though, to talk through your issue and, if you desire, point you in the right direction for a formal complaint.

Ombuds Principles


Principles

Confidential

We keep no records that contain identifying information and hold all communications in strict confidence. We will not disclose your identity unless you give us permission to do so, except as required by law or where, in the judgment of the ombuds, there appears to be imminent risk of serious harm.

Impartial

Our office is a neutral space and our ombuds are unaligned and impartial. We help develop a range of responsible options and facilitate discussion to identify the best possible outcomes.

Informal

As an informal resource, we do not mandate policies or formally adjudicate issues. Rather, we listen and provide information, help to reframe issues, and encourage people to develop new insights for solving their concerns. Beyond our participation in individual conversations, we have a responsibility to address concerns about policies and procedures, including potential future issues, and provide recommendations for responsibly addressing them.

Independent

We are independent in structure and function to the highest degree possible within Emory, with a reporting relationship directly, and only, to the president. Our ombuds will hold no other position within Emory that would compromise that independence.