What is the Ombudsman of Ontario?

This article contains information from Ombudsman Ontario.

The Ombudsman of Ontario investigates complaints about services provided by the provincial government and its organizations.

The Ombudsman receives thousands of complaints a year from people who think government organizations have acted in a way that is unfair, illegal, unreasonable, mistaken, or just plain wrong. In addition to investigating these individual complaints, the Ombudsman's office also conducts investigations on issues that affect a large number of people.

Which organizations does the Ombudsman cover?

The Ombudsman’s Office covers about 500 provincial ministries, Crown corporations, tribunals, agencies, boards and commissions.

Some examples of services these organizations provide are:

  • Access to government services
  • Community Care Access Centres
  • Disability benefits
  • Health insurance (OHIP)
  • Workplace safety and insurance

You can search for organizations covered by the Ombudsman.

Which organizations are not covered?

The Ombudsman cannot investigate complaints about:

  • Court decisions
  • Doctors
  • Federal government programs or decisions
  • Hospitals, nursing homes and long-term care facilities (those are overseen by the Patient Ombudsman)
  • Lawyers
  • Police
  • Ontario Cabinet
  • Private companies or individuals

Visit the Ombudsman Ontario website for more details about what is not covered.

How do I make a complaint to the Ombudsman?

If you feel you have been treated unfairly by a provincial government organization, try to resolve the problem with that organization first. If the problem continues or if it was not resolved properly, you can complain to the Ombudsman. All complaints to the Ombudsman are strictly confidential.

You can make a complaint online, by mail, fax, phone (TTY available), or by email. Get more details about these complaint methods.

It does not cost anything to make a complaint or to have your complaint investigated.

For More Information

  • Ombudsman Ontario - Official website of the Ombudsman of Ontario. Provides information about their work, how to make a complaint and recent statistics.
  • ODSP Complaints - This fact sheet is for people on the Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP), who have concerns about how they have been treated by ODSP staff. From the ODSP Action Coalition.
Last updated: April 24, 2024 4000417