Are you unhappy with a service you are receiving or think you should be receiving from Social Services? If so the following information will tell you how to make a complaint.
Who may complain
Social Services - Adults
- Anyone who receives or thinks they should receive a Local Authority Service.
- Anyone on behalf of somebody who receives or thinks they should receive a Local Authority Service.
Social Services - Children
- Any child who is looked after by the Local Authority or any child in need.
- A parent.
- Anyone with parental responsibility.
- A Local Authority Foster parent.
- Anyone with enough interest in the welfare of the child.
- On behalf of a looked after child or child in need.
What may you complain about
You may wish to complain if you are not satisfied with a service you are receiving or you think you are not receiving a service you think you should.
How to make your complaint
Your complaint can be made to the appropriate complaints officer or to any member of Social and Housing Services staff. You can do this yourself or get someone to help you. You can make your complaint by telephone, in writing, by calling in at your nearest Social Services or Housing office.
The Angel, Market Place, Brigg, DN20 8LD
Tel. 01724 296426 (Fax. 01724 296464)
The Social Services Complaints Procedure
The information below explains how your complaint will be dealt with. There are 3 possible stages through which your complaint may pass, if it is not satisfactorily dealt at any one of these stages.
At this stage the aim is to solve your problem locally.
- Your complaint will be looked at first by those most closely involved, that will be your usual worker or their manager.
- Every effort will be made to work out with you the best way to solve your problem. Some action should be taken within 10 days.
- You will receive a reply in writing within 28 days of making your complaint.
If you are not satisfied with this reply you can contact the Complaints Officer and your complaint can be taken to Stage 2.
This stage is a more formal investigation of your compliant.
- An Investigating Officer will be appointed. He or she will be a senior manager who is not directly involved with you or your usual workers.
- The Investigating Officer will talk with you and listen to your complaint. They will then talk to staff and others involved and look at records to gain as much information as possible to answer your complaint.
- If your complaint concerns a child, someone not employed by the council, an Independent Person will be asked to be involved in the investigation. They will ensure the investigation is carried out properly and give an independent point of view.
- At the end of the investigation you will receive a report and a decision about what can or cannot be done about your complaint. You should receive this within 28 days of your complaint being accepted at stage2.
If again you are not satisfied you can ask that your complaint be looked at again. This must be done within 28 days of receiving the reply at Stage 2 and must be in writing.
Your complaint will then be taken to Stage 3.
Stage 3 - Panel Review
This stage is a full consideration of information gathered at the stage 2 investigation and the reply you were given.
- At this stage your complaint is looked at by a group of people.
- You will be invited to talk to the Panel about why you are not happy with the response you were given.
- The Investigating Officer and Independent Person, if there was one, will be also invited and asked questions about the investigation.
- The Panel will look at the reports and response you were sent.
- The Panel will reach a decision within 24 hours. You will receive a final decision from the Director in 28 days.
This is the end of the local authorities complaints procedures. If you still consider your complaint has not been dealt with satisfactorily you can approach the Local Government Ombudsman who is appointed by the government and may look at your complaint again.
At any stage in the above process, if you need more help, you are free to contact your local Councillor or the Citizens Advice Bureau (12 Oswald Road, Scunthorpe, DN15 7PT. Tel. 01724 848645).