A Brief History
of the Ombuds Offices
In 1809 the Swedish parliament appointed an ‘ombudsman’
to resolve problems in the absence of the country’s King.
The concept re-emerged in Denmark in 1953 when an independent ombudsman
was appointed to deal with citizen’s complaints concerning
the government’s administrative practices.
Today, there are government ombudspersons at work throughout the
world and many private companies have adopted the position to assist
consumers and employees who wish to address administrative problems.
Ombudspersons are now found in banks, hospitals, insurance companies
and newspaper offices. As well, over 200 colleges and universities
in the United States and Canada have established Ombuds offices.
These offices rely on rich heritage to assist their communities
in resolving disputes.