December 31, 2015

31 December 2015

Ombudsman begins taking complaints about Ontario municipalities and universities on New Year’s Day

Beginning tomorrow – January 1, 2016 – the Ontario Ombudsman is officially able to take complaints about the province’s 444 municipalities and 21 publicly funded universities. This historic expansion of the Ombudsman’s mandate is the result of the Public Sector and MPP Accountability and Transparency Act, 2014, which also extended the Ombudsman’s jurisdiction to school boards on September 1, 2015.

December 31, 2015

31 December 2015

The Ontario Ombudsman’s Top 10 Things to Know for 2016

A year-end Top 10 list is an annual tradition here at the Office of the Ontario Ombudsman. As we wrap up our milestone 40th year and welcome an historic expansion of our mandate on January 1, Acting Ombudsman Barbara Finlay has designed this list to help Ontarians get to know us better. Without further ado, here are her Top 10 Things To Know for 2016.​

December 16, 2015

16 December 2015

Ombudsman reports progress in municipal transparency, encourages local accountability officers

A new era of local government accountability begins January 1 when the Office of the Ontario Ombudsman takes on full oversight of municipalities, Acting Ombudsman Barbara Finlay said today in releasing the Office’s latest report.

December 4, 2015

4 December 2015

Ombudsman closes last Hydro One case – oversight ends today

The Office of the Ontario Ombudsman has closed its last Hydro One case, as the utility no longer comes under the watchdog’s scrutiny, Acting Ombudsman Barbara Finlay announced today.

October 30, 2015

30 October 2015

Ombudsman’s office marks 40 years of helping citizens, improving governance

Milestone coincides with historic expansion of mandate - The Office of the Ontario Ombudsman today celebrates 40 years of helping citizens resolve issues with the provincial government. The occasion comes as the office embarks on an historic expansion of its mandate – something the first Ombudsman began calling for in 1975.

September 24, 2015

24 September 2015

Ombudsman’s office releases submission on carding

The Office of the Ombudsman of Ontario today publicly released its submission to the government on the subject of police street checks. The submission was made in August as part of the Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services’ public consultation on the practice often known as “carding.”

September 16, 2015

16 September 2015

Acting Ombudsman of Ontario named

Barbara Finlay has been named acting Ombudsman of Ontario, pending the Legislative Assembly’s selection process to fill the position permanently. Ms. Finlay has served with the Ontario Ombudsman’s office since 2005 as Deputy Ombudsman and Director of Operations. She has previously worked as Director General of Operations for the National Defence and Canadian Forces Ombudsman, and as an Assistant Crown Attorney and part-time law professor.

September 8, 2015

8 September 2015

Ombudsman receives 50 complaints about school boards in first week of mandate; increase expected as classes begin

One week after new legislation enabling the Ontario Ombudsman to take complaints about school boards took effect, 50 people have complained about a diverse range of issues – a number expected to grow as Ontario children return to school today.

August 31, 2015

31 August 2015

Ombudsman begins taking complaints about school boards September 1

Beginning tomorrow, September 1, the Ontario Ombudsman is officially able to take complaints about the province’s 82 school boards. The historic new expansion of the Ombudsman’s mandate was granted with the passage of Bill 8, the Public Sector and MPP Accountability and Transparency Act, 2014.

July 28, 2015

28 July 2015

Ombudsman marks decade of progress in 2014-2015 Annual Report

Ontario Ombudsman André Marin today released his tenth annual report, marking the end of an historic year – and decade – that saw the largest investigation in the history of the office, the enactment of legislation extending the Ombudsman’s mandate to municipalities, school boards and universities, and an 86% increase in complaints received since 2009-2010.

June 5, 2015

5 June 2015

Information for new Hydro One complainants

As of June 4, 2015, the Ombudsman no longer has oversight of Hydro One. This oversight was removed in the passage of the Building Ontario Up Act (Budget Measures) 2015. If you have a new complaint about Hydro One, please refer to these options.

June 4, 2015

4 June 2015

Ombudsman no longer able to take Hydro One complaints

Ontario Ombudsman André Marin today reminded customers of Hydro One that his office is no longer able to take complaints about the utility, now that royal assent has been given to Bill 91, the Building Ontario Up Act (Budget Measures) 2015.

May 25, 2015

25 May 2015

Ombudsman urges corporate culture overhaul, ongoing oversight of Hydro One

Egregious billing, customer service problems; Utility “lost sight of its public interest purpose”.

Ombudsman André Marin today called on Hydro One to overhaul its corporate culture to focus on customers and transparency, and urged the government to preserve independent oversight of the utility in the public interest.

May 21, 2015

21 May 2015

Ombudsman oversight coming soon to municipalities, universities and school boards

The public will be able to complain to the Ontario Ombudsman about school boards as of September 1, 2015, and about municipalities and universities as of January 1, 2016, now that the dates have been proclaimed for the relevant sections of the Public Sector and MPP Accountability and Transparency Act to come into force.

May 14, 2015

14 May 2015

Statement from Ontario's Independent Legislative Officers

Ontario’s Independent Officers of the Legislative Assembly are calling on the provincial government to reverse plans in the Budget Bill that they believe will significantly reduce important oversight powers.

March 11, 2015

11 March 2015

Ombudsman receives 10,000+ complaints about Hydro One, urges utility to stop “cruel, deceitful” threats to customers

Investigation update: 4,075 cases resolved as systemic probe continues.

January 27, 2015

27 January 2015

Brighter days ahead for municipal accountability: Ombudsman

After seven years of “patchwork” enforcement and widespread confusion about the rules requiring them to hold open meetings, there is good news for Ontario municipalities and the citizens seeking to hold them accountable, Ontario Ombudsman André Marin says today in his latest report.