Go to content
The Faso Ombudsperson, Ms. Alima Deborah Traoré, spent August 28 to 31 at the offices of the Québec Ombudsman as part of the institution’s activities aimed at international cooperation among public protectors in the French-speaking world. Having developed a specific investigation method applicable to the public service, the health and social services network, and the correctional system alike, the Québec Ombudsman provided an overview for its African counterpart. It also covered another major component of its activities, namely, parliamentary oversight of the National Assembly, as well as its action on the following fronts: preventive (prevention of wrongs), systemic (corrections to deficient systems) and collective (starting from individual cases, finding common solutions for everyone grappling with the same problem). Lastly, the Recueil de doctrine de médiation, a far-reaching tool produced in collaboration with the Moroccan mediator to foster the inter-institutional sharing of knowledge and expertise, was emphasized.
Despite the differences in geography, politics and socioeconomics, the Faso and Québec institutions deal with a number of common issues and problems. The week-long exchange made the Ombudsperson, her African colleague and the colleague's director of communications, Ms. Sophie Zagre, aware that both institutions see, for example, cases of administrative inflexibility in public services and decisions by public servants who do not always measure the real impact their choices have on citizens. Both face a sizable challenge too: making the two institutions visible to citizens, mainly those who do not automatically turn to a mediator. Whether in Faso or Québec, the institutions' perseverance and sense of mission are their driving forces in ensuring respect of citizens' rights and strengthening their confidence in the quality of public services.
Today, the Association des Ombudsmans et Médiateurs de la Francophonie (AOMF) posted its new publication, the RECUEIL DE LA DOCTRINE DE L'OMBUDSMAN, online. The main producer of this major and innovative reference tool is the Québec Ombudsman, assisted by the Institution du Médiateur du Maroc, with funding from the Organisation internationale de la Francophonie (OIF).
The compendium is a collection of work methods, solutions and good practices:
The purpose of the compendium is to support the mission of ombudsmen and mediating institutions, contribute to their training, and improve the quality of their work.
Since its inception, the Québec Ombudsman has helped promote of the ombudsman concept in Québec and elsewhere. In association with the Médiateur de la République française, the Québec Ombudsman founded Association des ombudsmans et médiateurs de la Francophonie (AOMF) in 1997.
The Québec Ombudsman is also an institutional member of the Forum of Canadian Ombudsman (FCO), the Canadian Council of Parliamentary Ombudsman (CCPO), the United States Ombudsman Association (USOA) and the International Ombudsman Institute (IIO).
Representatives from other countries interested in the work methods used in Québec are regular visitors to the Québec Ombudsman's offices, where internships, seminars, and workshops are held.
The Québec Ombudsman also plays an active role in promoting the ombudsman concept in Québec by encouraging and helping government ministries and agencies and other public sector organizations in setting up services for handling complaints.
The Québec Ombudsperson, Ms. Raymonde Saint-Germain, met with the European Ombudsman, Mr. Nikiforos Diamandouros, during his Montréal visit on October 6. On the agenda for discussion were their institutions' mandates, investigation process, and ways to better promote respect of citizens' rights by the instances subject to their respective areas of jurisdiction. Mr. Diamandouros was also interested in the question of the transparency of public agencies, an issue covered by his organization's sphere of activity.
The European Ombudsman investigates complaints about maladministration in the institutions and bodies of the European Union.
On April 13, 2010 in Québec City, the Québec Ombudsman and its Moroccan counterpart, the Diwan Al Madhalim, signed a cooperation agreement outlining a variety of activities with a view to pooling expertise. Both institutions will benefit from the agreement through training, the sharing of experience, cooperation within international bodies, and exchanges tied to the role of mediator. One of the first shared projects between the Québec Ombudsman and the Diwan Al Madhalim is the development of a compendium of mediation doctrine.
In September 2009, the Québec Ombudsman hosted the seventh convention of the Association des Ombudsmans et Médiateurs de la Francophonie, with the theme "Mediator, Politics and Justice: Toward Equitable Access to Rights". The convention, which took place at the Québec National Assembly, brought together 80 participants from 25 countries. At the end of the convention, the Québec Ombudsperson was elected to serve as the Association's second vice-president.
The Québec Ombudsman's involvement and leadership in the group entails two practical projects.
The Québec Ombudsman also welcomed a number of representatives of foreign institutions to Québec for work sessions to demonstrate its role, its missions and its methods. For example, in 2009-2010, we hosted the Egyptian Minister of State for Administrative Development and representatives from institutions and organizations in Serbia, South Korean, Luxemburg and Cameroon.