Ombudsman for the Defence Forces

Report on the recent visit of the Ombudsman for the Defence Forces to the Canadian Military Ombudsman

19 November 2008

In October, the Ombudsman for the Defence Forces, Ms. Paulyn Marrinan Quinn SC, travelled to Canada for a fact-finding visit.

The Ombudsman met Mr. Andre Marin, former Canadian Military Ombudsman and currently Ombudsman for Ontario, and his team in their offices in Toronto.

Since Mr. Marin’s appointment as Ombudsman for Ontario, he has reorganised the office, focusing its resources on high-profile, systemic investigations through the creation of the Special Ombudsman Response Team (SORT).

Travelling to Ottawa, Ms. Marrinan Quinn next met with her Canadian counterpart, Ms. Mary McFadyen, Interim Ombudsman for the Department of Defence and Canadian Forces, and her team.

These meetings provided an opportunity to exchange information and approaches on how common challenges – such as redress, the optimum deployment of resources and the management of complainant expectations – are addressed.

In the course of her visit to Ottawa, the Irish Ombudsman for the Defence Forces also met the Director General of Canadian Forces Alternative Dispute Resolution, the Director General of the Canadian Forces Grievance Authority, the Judge Advocate General and the Veterans’ Affairs of Canada Ombudsman.

Ms. Marrinan Quinn concluded her trip by participating in an Ombudsman Forum with Ms. McFadyen and Mr. Chris Wheeler, Deputy Ombudsman of New South Wales, Australia, where the panel reflected on differences and similarities in the approaches to ombudsmanship in the three jurisdictions.

A more detailed report of Ms. Marrinan Quinn’s recent visit to Canada will be available over the coming weeks.

Photos of visit.