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Paulyn Marrinan Quinn S.C. Ombudsman for the Defence Forces. Presentation to Joint Committee on Investigations, Oversight and Petitions 29 th February, 2011. What does your Ombudsman do?
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Joint Committee on Investigations, Oversight and Petitions
29th February, 2011
A neutral third-party who investigates complaints by members, and former members, of the Defence Forces.……..independent of the Minister, the Department of Defence and the military authorities.
The Ombudsman is empowered to investigate complaints about actions taken by:
Any action that may have been:
Unresolved after Chief of Staff
28 days elapsed since
Complaint may be referred to Ombudsman
Chief of Staff
Research of issues by ODF
Redress of Wrongs (RoW) Process
ODF issues Preliminary View Report: four weeks for replies, clarifications and further information
Complainant not satisfied
No decision after 28 days – Complainant may refer matter to ODF
Responses and further information considered by ODF
ODF issues Final Report to Complainant, Chief of Staff and Minister
Appeal notified and file sent by Chief of Staff to ODF
Minister responds to Final Report
Complaint referred directly to ODF and file requested from Chief of Staff
Minister declines to accept recommendations
Minister accepts recommendations
Former member or serving member with a complaint against a civil servant
ODF can issue Special Report
ODF communicates outcome to Complainant
“The Ombudsman shall be independent in the performance of his or her functions….”
Section 4 (1) Ombudsman (Defence Forces) Act 2004.
Not in the first instance.
If, 28 days after the complaint was made, there is no resolution of the dispute, then a Serving member of the Defence Forces is entitled to bring their complaint directly to the Ombudsman
Can the Ombudsman for the Defence Forces investigate actions that occurred before the establishment of her Office?
The Ombudsman can only investigate actions taken on or since 1st December 2005, the day the Minister for Defence signed regulations bringing the provisions of the Ombudsman (Defence Forces) Act 2004 into force.
Is the Ombudsman for the Defence Forces excluded from investigating some issues?