Ombudspeople

The VBC has trained Ombudspeople who provide informal, confidential advice and information to staff and students on issues related to bullying, harassment, and sexual misconduct.  All Ombudspeople are members of staff who volunteer to work to provide advice. If you feel you or someone you know is experiencing or has experienced bullying, harassment, sexual harrassment or discrimination, you can contact any ombudsperson from the list below, regardless of your affiliation, and regardless of theirs. Ombudspeople are also available to staff who have been accused of bullying, harassment, sexual harassment, or discrimination.

  • In the event of a "conflict of interest" with one of the ombudspersons, it is recommended to contact the external ombudsperson.
  • The Ombudsperson provides independent, confidential, and informal support.
  • The Ombudsperson holds all communications with those seeking assistance in strict confidence and does not disclose confidential communications unless given permission to do so. The only exception to this privilege of confidentiality is when an involved party’s safety is in serious danger.
  • The Ombudsperson, as an informal resource, does not participate in any formal adjudicative or administrative procedure related to concerns brought to their attention.
  • Confidential discussions to listen to your concerns or inquiries.
  • Help in identifying and evaluating your options, and deciding which option makes the most sense for you.
  • Help with addressing issues that you are reluctant to raise within regular channels.
  • Only upon request, active involvement in resolving problems and speaking with relevant parties in order to do so.
  • Facilitating resolutions to disputes.
  • Upon request, assisting with identifying a suitable mediator.
  • Alerting management to systemic trends and issues that give rise to conflict, while keeping complainants anonymous.

That they will act as your advocate.

That they will make decisions on whether bullying or harassment has taken place.

That they will maintain confidentiality if they believe that there is no risk of harm to you or others

From 2024, it is possible to call on the services of an external ombudsperson. Furthermore, the group of ombudspeople meets four times a year to discuss systemic measures.

To contact the entire group of internal ombudspeople use: ombudspoeple(at)vbc.ac.at