The Office of the South Australian Ombudsman (now known as Ombudsman SA) was created to deal with complaints against State Government agencies. Its three primary focuses are:
In recent years, some 40% of the complaints which have been investigated have been resolved with some benefit to the complainant, the complaint being sustained or reasonably resolved.
Not all government agencies fall within the Ombudsman’s jurisdiction. For example, complaints against the Police (see Complaints against police) and complaints against judicial officers (see Complaints against Judges and other judicial officers) are not dealt with by the Ombudsman’s office.
Before a complaint can be investigated there are five conditions that must be satisfied:
The South Australian Ombudsman has additional powers to enter premises and to inspect documents and may, where it appears to be in the interests of an agency or the public, publish a report which will be referred to the relevant Minister. Under s 14A of the Ombudsman Act 1972 the Ombudsman also has the power to conduct a review of the administrative practices and procedures of an agency if it is in the public interest to do so.