The Town Council wants to know what you think.
Please let us know if you:
- Have a suggestion as to how we can improve things
- Want to let us know about a positive experience you have had
- Wish to make a complaint
You can give your feedback or make a complaint by:
- Writing to: Richmond House, Richmond Park, Morton Terrace, Gainsborough DN21 2RJ
- Calling: 01427 811573
- Emailing: firstname.lastname@example.org
You can find a copy of our complaints policy below.Complaints-Policy-202021
Adopted by Council – 1 December 2020
To be reviewed – Tom Clay
1.1 This policy defines what a complaint is, who can make one, how to make one and how the Town Council will deal with it.
2.1 All complaints will be dealt with in a fair, confidential and consistent manner. The objectives of this policy are:
• To resolve your complaint as soon as possible.
• Provide a fair and consistent process that is open to all.
• Tell you how long the procedure may take.
• To ensure the complainant and members of staff are treated with courtesy and respect.
- What is a complaint
3.1 When you are not happy about a service the Town Council provides or failed to provide or has not put right in a reasonable amount of time.
- What is not a complaint
4.1 The following are not complaints:
• An enquiry about a service the Town Council provides, for example, grass cutting or it’s opening hours.
• Matters that another authority or organisation is supposed to provide.
• A disagreement with a council decision
4.2 Matters relating to some specific issues will be dealt with as follows:
• A breach of the Allotment Tenancy Agreement or Terms & Conditions will be referred to the committees or officers responsible for allotments.
• Misuse of Town Council facilities by a user group that breaches booking arrangements will be referred to the committees or officers responsible for the facility.
• Complaints about land or facilities that the Town Council leases to another organisation will be referred to that organisation.
4.3 It will not be appropriate to deal with all complaints under this policy, for instance:
• Where it is felt that a council decision may be unlawful.
• Accusations of financial wrongdoing should be referred to the Town Council’s auditor.
• Breaches of the Members’ Code of Conduct should be referred to West Lindsey District Council.
• Any suspicion of criminal wrongdoing should be referred to the police.
• Any functions undertaken in agreement with another authority should be referred to that authority.
• A failure to release information under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 should be referred to the Information Commissioners Office.
• A complaint from a staff member will be considered through the appropriate channels.
• Where the complainant had begun legal proceedings against the Town Council.
• The merits of any insurance claim or matters that should be considered by the Town Council’s insurer.
4.4 A vexatious complaint is one which is unreasonably or has been made in order to inconvenience the Town Council rather than resolve an issue.
4.5 Any complaints that are judged vexatious will be considered on their merits. They will either be forwarded to the relevant committee or a written response given by an officer as to why they cannot be processed under this policy.
5 How to complain
5.1 You may complain by phone, email, or post.
5.2 In normal circumstances, a complaint should be submitted within six months of the incident leading to a complaint. In exceptional circumstances, the Town Clerk may waive this requirement.
5.3 Complaints will be acknowledged by email within three working days and ordinary mail within ten working days.
5.4 A written explanation as to why a complaint cannot be accepted will always be given.
5.5 Anonymous complaints will be considered on their merits and forwarded to a committee by the Town Clerk as appropriate.
6 The complaints procedure
6.1 Each complaint will be allocated to a specific officer who will look into the matter and respond to the complainant. They will also keep them updated throughout the process.
6.2 Every attempt will be made to resolve the complaint at the earliest opportunity prior to implementing the formal complaints procedure.
6.3 An open and honest attempt will be made to put things right without admitting liability.
6.4 If a complaint cannot be resolved informally it will be allocated to the appropriate Committee Chairman or Chairman of the Council.
6.5 The appropriate Chairman will review the matter and determine a pertinent course of action.
6.6 The officer will keep the complainant updated in respect of the procedure, the timescales involved and when they might expect a response.
6.7 If a complainant is not satisfied with the outcome of the complaint, they may request that it is reviewed by the Management and Finance Committee.
6.8 The Chairman of the Management and Finance Committee in consultation with the Chairman of the Council will decide whether the matter is referred to the Committee for consideration.
6.9 A full written reply will be sent at this stage or within thirty days if the matter is addressed by the Committee.
6.10 Once stage 3 is completed there will be no further opportunity for appeal or review.