City Ombudsman Releases Annual Report
The City’s watchdog is out with her annual report on the complaints her office receives from Torontonians about the services the City of Toronto provides.
Fiona Crean says with the independent Ombudsman’s office being relatively new in Toronto, there is still some confusion over her role. Crean notes that there has also been some resistance from city staff, but her office generally receives “good cooperation from the public service”.
Crean says while her office has only been in existence for just under four years, it can point to a number of successes. “More than half of the 160 recommendations made since my office opened advocated systemic change and cross-city fixes. All of them have been accepted.”
In 2012, the Office of the Ombudsman addressed 1430 complaints, six of which became systemic reviews of city programs and services. Similar to what was reported in 2011, the most common complaints made by Torontonians included poor communications, delays and inadequate service, unpredictable enforcement, and unfair decisions.
The top city departments that received complaints include Municipal Licensing and Standards, Revenue Services, and the Toronto Community Housing Corporation.
The Office of the Ombudsman also has a complaint system about its own services. This year there were two that centred on delayed responses to complainants.