The Parliamentary Ombudsmen (JO) are appointed by the Swedish Riksdag (parliament) to ensure that public authorities and their staff comply with the laws and other statutes governing their actions.
An administrator at the Social Services handed out a certificate to a parent that intended to apply for a passport for the child, without the other parent’s consent. The certificate included information regarding the other parent that was of a sensitive and personal nature.
In the decision, the Parliamentary Ombudsmen makes statements regarding the Social Services’ policies on issuing certificates.
The Parliamentary Ombudsmen directs criticism towards the City District Board for, among other things, issuing a certificate that may lead to their objectiveness being questioned, and for releasing information that was of a sensitive and personal nature.
In connection to a sequence of Opcat inspections of prisons that receive only women the Parliamentary Ombudsmen observed that the situation for female inmates with accompanied children, as well as pregnant women, was not recognized in a clear and consistent way by the Prison and Probation Service in regards to planning, placement and execution of penalties. An enquiry was initiated to further investigate cases regarding the two categories of inmates.
In the decision, the Parliamentary Ombudsmen directs criticism towards the Prison and Probation Service for not considering the fact that a female inmate cares for an infant or is pregnant, when assessing a suitable placement. The Parliamentary Ombudsmen encourage the Prison and Probation Service to consider adapting placements for inmates with accompanying children, at certain prisons, where the inmates as well as the children’s needs can be met in a satisfactory manner. The Parliamentary Ombudsmen also holds that female inmates with accompanied children should not be referred to only parental leave during their execution. The Prison and Probation Service should look over their routines and develop a cooperation with external actors to be able to offer inmates with accompanied children an acceptable content for the execution in addition to the parental leave. The Parliamentary Ombudsmen states, in regards to pregnant inmates, that prisons, in good time prior to child birth, conduct an assessment in consultation with the relevant obstetric clinic and so forth informs the pregnant woman of all necessary information regarding the planned measures.
The Parliamentary Ombudsmen notes that the Prison and Probation Service has initiated an important assignment to correct failures observed when looking into the authority’s efforts regarding inmates with accompanying children as well as pregnant inmates in prison. The Parliamentary Ombudsmen will conduct a follow up on these questions.
From December 2016 to July 2017, the Parliamentary Ombudsmen received a large amount of complaints against the Enforcement Authority. A reoccurring complaint was due to the authority’s lack of keeping records of completed payments, which had resulted in consequences for the complainants, inter alia; it led to incomplete investigations and distrains as well as delays in the authority’s repayments.
In the authority’s referral response to the Parliamentary Ombudsmen, the Enforcement Authority admits to the failures that the complainants have observed. The authority regrets the mistakes that have occurred and the inconvenience that the deficient processing has led to. The Enforcement Authority accounts for their failures in the asset management and for several measures taken to correct these failures.
In the decision, the Parliamentary Ombudsmen states that the authority’s management of restraints has not been in compliance to the instructions of how to administer the procedures according to the rule of law, as well as being cost efficient and done simply. The reason why these mistakes have occurred is, according to the Parliamentary Ombudsmen’s understanding, mistakes and failures in the authority’s asset management. To administer these duties according to the authority’s functions is the obligation of the senior management; the Parliamentary Ombudsmen directs severe criticism towards the Enforcement Authority.
The Parliamentary Ombudsmen will hand over a copy of this decision to the Ministry of Finance for knowledge.
When the social services take action related to a child, the child shall receive relevant information on the measure. The information that the child receives should be given with consideration to the child’s age and maturity, in every separate case. In the relevant complaint case, the Parliamentary Ombudsmen directs criticism towards the Social Welfare Board for reading an entire report due to concern to a child, in spite of the fact that the report included information that was unsuitable to share with the child.
A lawyer informed the municipality that an employee of the municipality had hired the lawyer as his legal representative in regards to the matter, among other things, that the municipality had suspended the employee from his job. According to the Social Welfare Board, the employed had no right to hire a legal representative in this particular context. Because of this, the municipality decided to correspond only with the employed. The Parliamentary Ombudsmen states that matters of employment such as the relevant matter may include many questions of a varying character and, if the employer is an authority, the circumstances should be processed pursuant to the Administrative Procedure Act. The legal matter now in question, were the rule of law holds particular ground, should, according to the Parliamentary Ombudsmen’s understanding, be considered a case in compliance to the Administrative Procedure Act. Pursuant to section 9 of the Administrative Procedure Act the regulation on the right to hire a legal representative was so forth applicable. The Parliamentary Ombudsmen holds that if a legal representative exists, it is, primarily, the legal representative that the municipality shall contact. The correspondence in the case should therefore go through the legal representative. The Parliamentary Ombudsmen directs criticism towards the Social Welfare Board for not corresponding with the legal representative.
The complainant was provided a date of birth, other than her correct date of birth, by the Swedish Tax Agency. On the certificate that the Migration Agency issues for persons that have received a residence permit, a person’s date of birth, among other things, is included. The complainant received four certificates from the Migration Agency including the birth date the complainant received from the Swedish Tax Agency, and not her correct date of birth. The Migration Agency held that the mistakes occurred due to technical limitations in their IT system.
The Parliamentary Ombudsmen directs criticism towards the Migration Agency for failing in their processing of the complainant’s certificate. The Migration Agency has taken a decision on measures to avoid similar problems, the Parliamentary Ombudsmen looks positive upon this decision.
By Försäkringskassan’s personalised webpage [Mina sidor] it appeared as if the authority had taken a decision on sickness benefit up to a specific date and that a renewed doctor’s certificate was required if the insured individual wished to apply for further sickness benefits. However, there was no explanation of the fact that the decision was an interim decision regarding benefits throughout the course of the investigation. In the decision, the Parliamentary Ombudsmen emphasize that information released on Försäkringskassan’s personalised webpage need to be adequately and clearly formulated.
Försäkringskassan took a decision to establish Y.Y.’s sickness benefit to a certain amount. Following upon Y.Y.’s request for a re-examination of the decision Försäkringskassan took a decision to, in connection to the request for re-examination, lower the sickness benefit pursuant to chapter 113, section 3 of the Social Insurance Code. The Parliamentary Ombudsmen holds that the decision on re-examination was not adequately formulated as it did not include information regarding the modification on which Försäkringskassan took an initiative, or to which extent the re-examination was based on Y.Y.’s request for a re-examination. In the decision, the Parliamentary Ombudsmen emphasize that an authority’s decision need to include adequate and well formulated grounds and moreover, the regulations that the decision is based upon.
Visit from China on December 8, a delegation from CPC Central Commission for Discipline Inspection of China
Representatives from the Baltic and Nordic Ombudsmen met in Stockholm to exchange experiences and ideas.
The Parliamentary Ombudsmen's overall statements for each supervisory area the year 2015/16.
The Swedish Parliamentary Ombudsmen - JOBox 16327 • SE-103 26 Stockholm • SwedenVisiting Address: Västra Trädgårdsgatan 4 AOpening hours: 9.00–12.00, 13.00–15.00