What we do
We help agencies within our jurisdiction to address problems with their performance. These problems may be uncovered by complaints from the public or by people who work for those agencies. Problems may also come to our attention through our work in scrutinising agency systems, overseeing investigations or reviewing the delivery of services.
We are responsible for keeping the following types of organisations under scrutiny:
- agencies delivering public services – including police, correctional centres and state-owned corporations
- organisations delivering services to children – including schools and child-care centres
- organisations delivering community services – including services for people with disabilities, people who are homeless and elderly people
- agencies conducting covert operations – including the Crime Commission and the Independent Commission Against Corruption.
We have other specific functions that relate to:
- the causes and patterns of deaths of children and people with disabilities in care
- decisions made by public sector agencies
- public interest disclosures
- the administration of the Official Community Visitors scheme
- the administration of the witness protection program
- the implementation of new pieces of legislation conferring additional powers on police
- monitoring and assessing designated Aboriginal programs.
Our focus is on improving the conduct and decision-making of those agencies. We use our experience and knowledge to make sure agencies are aware of their responsibilities to the public and act reasonably as well as lawfully. Traditionally we have done this by responding to complaints made to us and recommending action for the agency to take to resolve each complaint.
We also have specific functions relating to the protection of children in NSW, the delivery of community services, the causes and patterns of deaths of certain children and people with a disability in care, the use of powers to conduct controlled operations, and the operation of a number of new pieces of legislation conferring additional powers on police. Learn more:
- Make a complaint online
- Other complaint-handling agencies
- Information and resources for young people
- Information and resources for aboriginal people
- Information and resources for people with disabilities
- Committee on the Ombudsman, the Law Enforcement Conduct Commission and the Crime Commission
- Training workshops and events
- NSW Ombudsman Annual Report 2010 - 2011
- Fact sheets
- General information making a complaint to the Ombudsman