Faculty Ombudsperson

The Faculty Senate maintains policies and procedures governing the role and responsibilities of the Faculty Ombudsperson.  In general, Faculty Ombudsperson duties include the following:

  • to assist faculty in determining the institutional channels most appropriate for the resolution of a complaint
  • to assist faculty in seeking resolution of a complaint through normal institutional channels
  • to facilitate the informal resolution of complaints through mediation

 

Ombudsperson

David Neiweem

The Faculty Senate Executive Council appoints the Ombudsperson for non-unionized faculty for a one-year term.

The Ombudsperson for the 2016-2017 academic year is David Neiweem.  David is a Professor in the Department of Music and Dance in the College of Arts and Sciences.

Contact David Neiweem

 

Standards of Practice

Confidentiality

The Ombudsperson holds all communications with those seeking assistance in strict confidence and does not disclose confidential communications unless given permission to do so except in the following three circumstances: 1) the Faculty Ombudsperson is a witness to a crime; 2) there appears to be imminent threat of serious harm; or 3) the Ombudsperson is required to release information by legal subpoena (valid court order) and attempts to protect the Ombudsperson from disclosure fail.

The Ombudsperson maintains no formal case files, and takes all reasonable steps to protect records from inspection by all other persons.  Informal notes taken in the course of consideration of a matter are destroyed at its conclusion.  In addition, the Ombudsperson will not disclose whether or not you contacted the Ombudsperson without your permission to do so.  This promise of confidentiality ensures that you are safe in contacting the Ombudsperson.

If a problem is eventually taken to a formal grievance process, the Ombudsperson will not testify for or against anyone in that process.

Neutrality

The Faculty Ombudsperson is a designated neutral party and approaches each case impartially and without prejudice.  The Ombudsperson is committed to fairness, equity, and the humane treatment of all parties.

Independence

The Faculty Ombudsperson is funded by the Faculty Senate but is independent of that office.  The Ombudsperson reports summary information about Ombuds activities that is not individually identifiable to the Faculty Senate, for example numbers of contacts and types of situations considered, and may bring general suggestions regarding changes in policies and procedures.  The Faculty Ombudsperson does not act as an agent of notice for the University of Vermont, and does not accept formal complaints or notice for UVM.  The University of Vermont resources for reporting crime on campus and instances of sexual harassment and sexual misconduct involving a member of the campus community, are detailed in both the University's Campus Security Authority Operating Procedure and the Sexual Harassment and Misconduct - Interim Policy.

Resources and Links

For faculty covered under the Collective Bargaining Agreement between the Univeristy of Vermont and United Academics (AAUP/AFT), your first contact should be with the UA at (802)489-0964, or info@unitedacademics.org.

For more information about the University's responsibilities under the Clery Act and Title IX, including who at UVM is a madatory reporter under federal law, how to report incidents of crime for inclusion in annual statistics, and what options are available if you've experienced harassment or discrimination, please see:

Sexual Conduct and Education Website

Sexual Harassment and Misconduct Policy

Campus Safety and Security: Clery Act Policy

Campus Security Authorities (CSA) University Operating Procedure

You may also contact the following individuals with questions:

Title IX Coordinator

Jes Kraus

Executive Director, Human Resource Services and Affirmative Action

(802) 656-3368

jes.kraus@uvm.edu

Clery Act Coordinator

Kelly Riel

UVM Police Services

(802)656-3052

kriel@uvm.edu