The Ombudspersons and the Ombuds Office provide anonymity and do not violate confidentiality. They do not disclose who seeks, or does not seek, their consultation. They make-and keep-the promise of anonymity to graduate students at the University at Albany in the hope that students will feel comfortable speaking with them. Ombudspersons only attempt to investigate a problem, open a channel of communication, or serve as a neutral third party upon the specific request of a student that the Ombudsperson attempt to mediate a conflict.
Ombudspersons do not become involved in formal grievances or judicial proceedings because Ombudspersons operate outside the ordinary administrative structure of the University and have no formal decision-making authority over students with whom they consult. Ombudspersons can provide referral information about whom to contact for anyone seeking to file a grievance or access judicial affairs, but Ombudspersons do not initiate such procedures.
Ombudspersons keep no official records of conferences with students and do not share identifying information about students with the Ombuds Committee or with any academic department or administrative office at the University without the student's express permission.
As faculty members at the University at Albany, Ombudspersons remain officers of a public agency. Ombudspersons maintain confidentiality and privacy within the limits of the law and unless they find reasonable evidence that a student may be a danger to him or herself, or to others.