What is covered by this complaints procedure?
All complaints handled under the Children & Young People's Statutory Complaints Procedure will be about the care services provided by the council for a person under the age of 18.
The Children's Act 1989 defines how the Council must address any complaints made, what we must do to address them and how long we can take addressing them.
For complaints under the Children Act 1989 there are three stages:
Stage 1 - Local resolution
When we receive your complaint we will examine the details and respond with details of how we aim to resolve the issues you've encountered.
When we receive your complaint, we will acknowledge receipt of it. In this, we will include details of who is investigating and responding to your complaint, when you can expect a response and our contact details in case you have any questions.
Stage 2 – Investigation stage
If you are not satisfied with the response at Stage 1, you can request to progress to Stage 2.
You have up to 28 days after receipt of the Stage 1 response to make a request.
Stage 2 is an investigation undertaken by an independent investigator from within the Council (a investigator can be arranged from outside the Council should the situation warrant it.) A Stage 2 investigation is arranged by the Complaints Manager and is overseen by an Independent Person assigned by the NSPCC who will ensure that the complaint is investigated fairly.
The investigation will take 25 working days but can be extended up to a total of 65 working days if taking longer than expected.
Stage 3 - Review panel
A review panel can be arranged if responses at Stage 1 and 2 are considered unsatisfactory.
The Review Panel provides an independent review of the response to complaints.
The Review Panel will consist of 3 people who are independent of the Council and, wherever possible, have familiarity with the type of complaint under consideration.
More details of how the Review Panel functions are available in the complaints policy below.
If you are still unhappy
If you want to take your complaint further you can then contact the Local Government Ombudsman by following the link to their website on this page.