Ombudsman Committee

About the Ombudsman Committee
We strive to facilitate harmony and respect within membership by enhancing open communication, accountability and transparency in resolving disputes and grievances by promoting and ensuring the rights of members are observed.

Committee members
Dr. Shahnaaz Alidina, Chair
Br. Aunali Walji
Dr. Mohamed Peera

Ombudsman Committee Complaints Process

1.0 CAN THE OMBUDSMAN INVESTIGATE YOUR COMPLAINT?

Find out if the Ombudsman Committee can investigate by checking our Jurisdiction (below). We cannot take complaints by non-members regarding the by-laws or individual member disputes.

2.1 You might find it helpful to:

  • First channel your complaints to the appropriate committee before it comes to the Ombudsman Committee
  • Get the names and titles of the people you have dealt with such as any office bearer or committee member of the Corporation
  • Keep track of the dates of your contact with them
  • Keep all written communication relating to your complaint

First complain in writing to the body directly that your complaint falls under, and follow up with a reminder if necessary, failing which you can file your complaint to our office. Complaints can be filed via our confidential online complaint forms, or email, or documented in person – see how to contact us below.

Please note that we do not accept complaints through Twitter, Facebook, or any other third-party platforms.

The following time line will be adhered to investigating each case received:

  • An email acknowledging receipt of complaint will be sent to the complainant within two business days of receiving a case.
  • The Chair will convene a meeting of the Ombudsman Committee within ten business days of receiving the complaint to establish validity of the case and establish the next step.

4.3 The Ombudsman Committee will set up meetings with the respective parties with a view to discuss and amicably resolve the dispute. Failing which the Committee will initiate steps as outlined in 4.4

4.4 The Committee will chart out a process of investigation with a time frame not exceeding ten weeks. The complainant will receive a courtesy email on the process undertaken as well as its recommendations to the Board. The findings and recommendations of the Ombudsman Committee shall be forwarded in writing to the Board within three (3) months of the Office receiving any grievances or complaints, or being advised of a discord or dispute. The Boards shall thereafter have one (1) month within which to determine whether to accept and implement the Committee’s recommendations.

            4.4.1 If the Board accepts the Committee’s recommendations, the  decision of the Board shall be final and binding.

           4.4.2 If the Board does not accept the Committee’s recommendations, the Committee may request at a special meeting of the Members to
consider the recommendations of the Committee. The decision of the Members shall be final and binding upon the Board.

4.5 Once the Ombudsman Committee has addressed the complaint and made its recommendation to the Board, its mandate shall be fulfilled and there shall be no further communication with the complainant regarding the complaint, regardless of whether the complainant calls a special meeting of the Members.

The Ombudsman Committee is fully committed to maintaining accuracy, fairness, impartiality and integrity in its operations. Our Core principal is in bringing harmony among members of ISIJ and resolving discord. It strives to be transparent and as open as possible in its dealings. Our mission is to inform, to reveal, to contribute to the understanding of issues of interest to members and to encourage members to participate in a free and democratic community. We base our credibility on fulfilling this mission through adherence to our values and principles laid out in the Code of Ethics.

The Ombudsman Committee is completely independent of the Board of Directors of ISIJ and collaborates with the Speaker to mediate disputes and/or call Special General Meetings.

The Ombudsman Committee acts as an appeal authority for complainants who are dissatisfied with responses from the Board of Directors (BoD).

The Ombudsman Committee generally intervenes only when a complainant deems a response from a representative of the BoD unsatisfactory and thus informs the Office of Ombudsman. However, the Ombudsman may also intervene when the BoD fails to respond to a complaint within a reasonable time (one month).  

The Ombudsman Committee determines whether the process about which the complainant filed did in fact violate the Corporation By-laws and Code of Ethics. The gathering of facts is a non-judicial process and the Ombudsman Committee does not examine the civil liability of the Corporation or its committees. The Ombudsman Committee informs the complainant and the Management concerned of the review’s findings.

The Ombudsman Committee establishes a central registry of complaints and comments regarding information content and alerts the BoD on a regular basis to issues that are causing public concern.  

The Ombudsman Committee prepares and presents an annual report to the President and the Board of Directors of the Corporation summarizing how complaints were dealt with and reviews the main issues handled by the Ombudsman Committee in the previous year. The report includes mention of the actions, if any, taken by the management as a result of the Ombudsman Committee’s findings, provided such disclosure does not contravene applicable laws, regulations or collective agreements.  The annual report, or a summary thereof, is made public.

The jurisdiction of the Ombudsman Committee covers all issues of governance of the Corporation of ISIJ of Toronto and its members. These are:

7.1 The Committee shall investigate written grievances or complaints from the membership on issues of non-compliance of the governing documents of the Corporation (including the Articles, By-laws, Code of Ethics) by Members of the Corporation in accordance with section 4.09 of General Operating By-Law No.2.

7.2 The Committee will investigate issues relating to non-renewal of membership in accordance with section 4.06 (e) of the General Operating By-Law No. 2.

7.3 The Committee will only intervene when a complainant is unsatisfied with the BoD’s response or the complaint has not been addressed within reasonable time (one month).

The Committee will only deal with complaints about bodies that are within our jurisdiction, after existing complaints mechanism have been utilized.

Complaints beyond the Ombudsperson’s mandate should be addressed directly to the governing body responsible for it.

The Ombudsman Committee can choose not to pursue a complaint based on such factors as whether or not the issue is still current, alternative remedies exist, the matter involves public policy rather than administrative issues, or the complaint is deemed frivolous or vexatious by the Ombudsman Committee.

File A Complaint to the Ombudsman Committee of the ISIJ of Toronto

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