Conflict resolution options are available to retirement village residents - the ACT government has found - the problem is, many residents aren't aware of them. The government has rejected a push for the establishment of a retirement village ombudsman, opting to draw attention to existing avenues instead. The Legislative Assembly passed a resolution to investigate the potential establishment of an ombudsman in March, following the launch of two petitions late last year. A report presented to the Assembly by Attorney General Shane Rattenbury in September found establishment of a new body could create challenges without "substantially increasing access to justice" and costs would be "substantial". The report noted there are a number of available avenues for retirement village residents to lodge disputes which are currently "underutilised". If a dispute can not be satisfactorily resolved by a village's internal disputes committee, or the village doesn't have one, disputes can be lodged with the following bodies. Government service Access Canberra can assist with complaints concerning breaches of retirement village or consumer laws. Complaints can also be lodged through the court system, but the report found this process is likely to be more costly and time consuming than other options. Speaking to the Assembly, Mr Rattenbury said it is especially important to highlight the Human Rights Commission's ability to mediate disputes. The government first gave retirement villages the capacity to lodge disputes with the commission in 2019, but Mr Rattenbury said the pandemic had made it hard to get the word out. "It is my hope that more Canberra retirement village residents will utilise the Human Rights Commission conciliation services," he said. "I understand that, as we have transitioned out of pandemic settings, the commission is conducting outreach through multiple avenues to promote its services to older Canberrans. The report identified opportunities to "enhance" the use of existing dispute resolution avenues by better promoting their availability. ACT Retirement Village Residents Association secretary Anne Caine said while the association was "disappointed" with the outcome, it appreciated and accepted the government's reasoning. Ms Caine said the investigation and report had highlighted that while there are a range of "existing, and possibly effective" avenues available, they are not "known about, understood or properly utilised" by most residents. She welcomed the government's commitment to promote these avenues more effectively and to remind operators of their obligation to establish internal committees for dispute resolution. "In particular, we accept that the Human Rights Commission could be a very valuable forum for residents to resolve their disputes, and we thank (Human Rights Commissioner) Karen Toohey... for her positive engagement with us and her recent actions to promote her role to all retirement village residents," Ms Caine said. She said the Association looks forward to working with the government and other stakeholders to consider other potential improvements, including the introduction of a standard contract for residents entering retirement villages. The Retirement Living Council and Property Council of Australia welcomed the government's decision. Retirement Living Council executive director Daniel Gannon said "adding more red tape to the mix" would only compound the housing crisis. "Industry's voluntary Code of Conduct has been in place for three years now, with a growing number of signatories, underlining our commitment to raising industry standards," he said. "The Code gives operators a set of standards to ensure every resident's experience is a positive one, with minimal complaints across the country every year."