Staff Ombuds Office
-> Staff Ombuds Office
Ms. Cynthia Edmunds (Biography
Hours & Location
8:30am - 5:00pm / Monday - Friday
4205 John S. Toll Physics Building
College Park, MD 20742
Our office is located at 4205 John S. Toll Physics Building to assure that anyone visiting will feel safe that their issues are being kept strictly confidential.
We hope this location is centralized and convenient for all members of the campus community. The building is accessible from the main entrance as well as the side entrance adjacent to the tennis courts and near parking lot Z.
Telephone access to the Staff Ombuds office is available 24 hours a day. Voicemail messages are confidential and only handled by the Staff Ombuds personnel. Every effort is made to return your call as soon as possible.
Our office is open from 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. Appointments are scheduled between 9:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. Some circumstances warrant appointments to be scheduled at other times.
Frequently Asked Questions
Who Should be an Ombudsperson?
Backgrounds for ombuds officers are varied, from lawyer to secretary, to engineer. Most, however, have been with their organization for a long time. Surveys indicate the average tenure is 16 years.
A great deal of what an ombudsperson does is listen with a respectful ear. The most important quality for an ombudsperson is to be a good listener and to possess the ability to offer absolute neutrality.
Why was the position of Ombudsperson established?
There are many work related problems and issues that can be resolved before they escalate to a point that causes an employee to file grievance, seek legal assistance, or resign their position. The campus administration recognized that the campus did not have a staff resource to provide mediation and negotiation services. The Ombudsperson is expected to take all reasonable steps in protecting records and files, pertaining to confidential discussions, from inspection by all other persons, including management. The Ombudsperson should not testify in any formal judicial or administrative hearing about concerns brought to his/her attention. The administration intends for the Ombudsperson, when making recommendations, to assume the responsibility of suggesting actions or policies that will be equitable to all parties.
What types of instances warrant a call/visit to the Staff Ombuds Person?
If you are a campus staff member involved in a situation at your job that hinders you from performing your duties, and you feel you have tried to resolve it without success, you have a resource on campus that can assist you. Examples of cases referred to the Ombudsperson include, but are not limited to: supervisor and/or co-worker conflicts, age/race/gender discrimination, P.R.D. and other personnel issues. The Ombudsperson deals strictly with work related issues.
Campus employees experiencing personal or any other types of non-work related issues should refer to our list of other resources.
University of Maryland Ombuds Services
The Conflict Resolvers Network Homepage