The 2008 report's findings show that there was an 18.5% decrease in new cases opened, and at the same time, an increase in 14% in the number of people contacting the Ombudsman Unit for preliminary consultation via phone or meetings.
According to the Ombudswoman, the decrease in the number of cases opened is a direct result of the implementation of the recommendations of complaints that were found to be justified and the deficiencies in those matters were rectified. In addition, the Ombudswoman congratulated the efforts in improving the efficiency in personal treatment, yet also highlighted the increase in the number of preliminary consultation which can easily develop into complaints requiring investigation.
In 2008, 511 complaints were lodged (173 are still open cases). The largest number of complaints were regarding salary (138 cases), which consists of 23% of the complaints. Commander-subordinate relationships were the second largest area of complaints (124 cases – 21%), and service conditions (106 cases – 17%). These findings are different from 2007 when the most popular issue was Salary, after which service conditions and only then commander-subordinate relationships.
Throughout 2008, 558 police complaints were completed (including a number of cases from the previous year), and 37% of the cases completed were found justifiable. 51% of the cases were found non justifiable and 12% were closed before completing the investigation.
Within the Israel Police, 186 complaints were submitted by Border Police personnel, 64 by police officers in the Northern District, 56 from the Southern District, and 51 from the National Headquarters.
Israel Prison Service
In 2008, 149 complaints were lodged (43 are still open cases) and throughout the year, 149 cases were completed (including ones from last year). 30% of the cases (45 complaints) were found justifiable, 59% (88 cases) were found non justifiable, and 11% (16 complaints) were closed before completing the investigation.
The largest numbers of complaints were regarding salary – 65 cases, then service conditions (25), promotion (19) and commander subordinate relationships (18). 50 complaints were submitted by personnel from the Southern District, 35 from the Northern District, and 34 from the Central District.
Ombudswoman Keller emphasized the fact that the occurrence, which for obvious reasons can't be estimated, of police and prison personnel being reluctant and avoided submitting a complaint since they are worried that it will effect their promotion throughout the ranks and positions. "The uprooting of this phenomenon must be done by a system wide organizational culture change, including in part of the top brass."