Ombudsman Calls for OCS Grievance Overhaul
An investigation initiated by the ombudsman found that the public was ill-served by the grievance system within the Office of Children’s Services. Complaints to the ombudsman indicated that the grievance process was not well understood and not consistently applied. The ombudsman investigation traced the problems to grievance regulations that were poorly written and overly complex, resulting in widespread confusion within the agency over how to apply them.
The ombudsman recommended that OCS repeal the current grievance regulation and offered suggestions for a new streamlined grievance process. The ombudsman also recommended that OCS establish a grievance tracking system and provide training to staff in handling and processing grievances.
In its final report, the ombudsman found the allegation justified and concluded that OCS had partially rectified the problems, based on OCS’s agreement to implement the recommendations. The ombudsman considered the complaint only partially rectified because OCS had not yet taken action to implement most of the recommendations.