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This report looks at ways to help public authorities apologise for mistakes.

Many of the people who approach the Ombudsman are upset, not just about an authority’s mistake, but with the way the authority responded to their concerns. They want the authority to acknowledge and fix the problem, and treat them with respect.

A genuine apology is an important step towards achieving this. By acknowledging error and showing regret, authorities begin the process – hopefully – of repairing the damage and rebuilding trust. So why should it be hard for authorities to apologise for other mistakes?

The Ombudsman decided to conduct an own motion enquiry under section 13A of the Ombudsman Act 1973 to find out what is happening in Victoria.


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