The DES Office of the Ombudsman is the HEART of the Department of Economic Security. DES makes our state stronger by helping two million Arizonans with kindness and support.
The Mission of HEART stands for:
Helping clients to achieve independence and self-sufficiency
Empowering clients to develop their own solutions to problems
Allowing for open and effective communication
Reaching out to the community
Timely conflict mediation
Helping clients to achieve independence and self-sufficiency:
Client refers to anyone, including our DES colleagues who come to the Office of the Ombudsman for assistance. The DES mission makes Arizona stronger by helping Arizonans reach their potential through temporary assistance for those in need, and care for the vulnerable. We strive to help those who are experiencing economic and social difficulties and to help those who apply for benefits and services in order to maintain and/or move toward self-sufficiency.
Clients sometimes run into problems when they attempt to navigate processes within DES. The Office of the Ombudsman strives to help clients work through the issues that can prevent them from achieving self-sufficiency.
Empowering clients to develop their own solutions to problems:
When the basic needs of food, shelter and clothing are met, clients are able to concentrate on improving their quality of life. The Office of the Ombudsman cannot overturn. Reverse decisions or set policy. Therefore, an Ombudsman must help the client identify their options and assist in finding solutions.
Allowing for open and effective communication:
The Office of the Ombudsman wants to concentrate on resources and outreach throughout the State of Arizona. Potential clients need to be aware of our existence and view us as a source for help, as well as referrals. Facilitating meetings with clients in conflict is also a very important part of the Office of Ombudsman.
Reaching out to the community:
One of the goals of the Office of the Ombudsman is helping clients understand that the Arizona Department of Economic Security is not impossible to navigate. Meeting with community-based organizations which serve our DES population helps to humanize the Department and encourage those that need us the most to take advantage of our services. Contact with the DES programs and involvement with community resources is necessary to improve the knowledge of the Ombudsman.
Timely conflict mediation:
We are always dedicated to going the extra mile to demonstrate the sincerity of the Office of Ombudsman to all clients and work towards a timely win-win situation. Each client, external and internal, will be heard. Being kind opens every dialogue. All possible solutions will be explored until an acceptable resolution is reached through collaboration.