Most complaints concerned the police, social welfare and health care, and prisons
The Ombudsman received nearly 4,100 complaints last year. In addition, he launched over 60 investigations on his own initiative.
Once again, half of the complaints related to a few major categories of matters: the police, social welfare, health care and the prison service. Nearly 700 complaints were made about the police, over 500 related to social welfare, there were about 450 concerning health care and 350 about prisons.
The number of complaints has increased by about 65% in the past ten years. The most important reason for this is the growth that has taken place in the major categories of matters mentioned above. More than half of complaints arrive by e-mail.
In 2010 the Ombudsman issued a total of over 4,000 decisions on complaints and investigations launched on his own initiative.
More measures than earlier
The Ombudsman issued 50 reprimands last year and expressed an opinion intended to rebuke or as guidance for future reference in 666 cases. This represents an increase of over 19 per cent on the number of decisions issued in 2009.
Recent years have seen growth in the number of decisions that lead to measures being taken by the Ombudsman.
Also where decisions involving measures were concerned, the greater part in 2010 concerned the police, social welfare and health care as well as the prison service. This corresponds also to the long-term pattern.
On the other hand, few decisions involving measures related to courts, taxation, prosecutors and social insurance. This is due in part to the fact that the subjects of complaints are often court decisions in the contents of which the Ombudsman usually has no power to intervene.
More inspections than the previous year
The Ombudsman's tasks also include conducting inspections in administrative offices and institutions. The main sites inspected are prisons, police detention facilities, psychiatric hospitals and units of the Defence Forces. The number of sites inspected in 2010 was 68, more than the previous year.
When the Ombudsman's statistics for 2010 have been checked, we shall update the data on our web site under the heading "The work of the Ombudsman".
Additional info will be provided by Information Officer Kaija Tuomisto, tel. + 358(0)9 432 3352.