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What is the Ombuds Office?

The NASA Ombuds Program was established in 2005 as an informal, independent, confidential and neutral means of communicating and facilitating the resolution of safety, organizational performance, and mission related issues without fear of retaliation. All NASA Centers and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory have Ombuds who will listen to an employee’s issues, explore options, and weigh the pros and cons of various options for resolution. The Ombuds reports to the Center Heads at each site.

Learn More about What is the Ombuds Office?

Who We Serve And The Process We Use

The Ombuds Program serves civil servants, on-site contractors and students. An individual may chose to use the Ombuds Office if;

They do not know what formal resources are available to them

They have already been to the formal resources and do not feel like the process was fair

Feel that the formal resource is too close to the situation to be impartial

Want to raise an issue and not be identified as the source of the information

The Ombuds Process

The Ombuds will:

  • Listen with an open mind
  • Help clarify an issue
  • Work with you to identify options for resolution and the pros and cons of each
  • Coach you to effectively communicate your own concerns
  • Facilitate discussion between individuals
  • Refer to formal resource if appropriate
  • Escalate concerns only with your specific permission
  • Share general demographic and issue trends with management
  • Act as a change agent

The Ombuds will not:

  • Serve as formal notice to the Center or Agency
  • Replace or supersede formal resources or policy
  • Conduct formal investigation
  • Serve as an advocate for any individual
  • Make binding decisions
  • Break confidentiality unless there is an imminent risk of serious harm to an individual, damage to property or a crime
  • Keep records