As a Council we are committed to providing a quality service to both adults and children who are in need of care and support. We recognise however that things do go wrong and on occasions do not meet our expected standards.
Social Care complaint are considered in line with the procedures set out by Welsh Government
You have every right to question any decision we make and to let us know if you’re not happy with anything.
We aim for high standards but sometimes things do go wrong. Unless you tell us we will not know that you are unhappy. If you contact us, we will be able to work with you to put things right as soon as possible. Finding out if you are pleased or disappointed with the service we provide will help us to improve the way we help you and other people in the future.
This page explains how, with your help and that of the staff working with you, we can sort out your complaint. How we deal with complaints is governed by Welsh Government guidance.
We can only look at complaints that are raised within 12 months of the matter of concern coming to your attention unless there are exceptional circumstances. Depending on the nature of your concern your complaint may be dealt with under another process, for example, where someone may be at risk. Any decision to investigate your concern under an alternative process will be discussed with you.
We cannot look at your complaint where an investigation may jeopardise a police investigation or an investigation being undertaken by the Care Inspectorate Wales.
Also, we won’t look at a complaint where you indicate that you are taking legal action or where there are legal proceedings.
Looking after your personal information
If you make a complaint, we will respect your right to confidentiality. Although we will need to share the information you give us with others who might be dealing with your complaint, we will only do this if necessary. We will not pass on any information unless we have to do so by law, and will only pass on as much as is necessary.
Can I ask someone to help me with my complaint?
You have the right to ask a representative or an advocate (someone who will help you state your point of view) to help you with your complaint. If you are under 18 we will find you an advocate.
Stage 1: Local Resolution
The first step in sorting out a problem is to contact someone involved in providing the service or, if you prefer, our Complaints Officer. This is known as local resolution. You may contact us in any way you choose – you don’t have to write it down.
You will be offered a discussion about the issues you have raised and this can either be done by telephone or face to face in an attempt to resolve the issues. This must be done within 10 working days of the receipt of your complaint. Should we be unable to meet this timescale, we will contact you to request that we are able to extend the deadline.
Following this discussion and any further investigation that is necessary, we will write to you within 5 working days when your problem has been resolved.
If your complaint is about a change to your service, we will usually try to deal with the problem before making this change. If we are unable to postpone the change, we will explain why.
Stage 2: Formal Investigation
You may ask for your complaint to be investigated by someone who is totally independent of the Local Authority. This is known as Stage 2 or formal investigation.
The Local Authority must compile a formal written record of the discussion which will be sent to you within 5 working days to enable you to comment on its accuracy. You will also be provided with details of how your complaint will be investigated, the name of the Investigating Officer and if appropriate, the Independent Person.
The Formal Investigation stage must be completed and a full written response issued to you within 25 working days of the start date. If, due to exceptional circumstances, this timescale cannot be met, we will write to you to advise you of the delay and to advise you when the response will be provided.
What can I do if I’m still not happy?
If you’re still not happy with the outcome of your complaint investigation after Stage 2, you may contact the Public Services Ombudsman for Wales.
What if I’m unsure who to complain to?
We work closely with lots of other organisations. You can complain to us about problems with any of your social care services. If the service you are unhappy about is provided by another organisation that we work with in partnership, we will pass on your complaint to them, if you wish.
You may have a complaint about a service we have arranged for you with another care provider, such as a residential care home, a home care agency, or a day service. Each organisation will have its own complaints process and we will usually send your complaint to them and make sure they deal with it. We will tell you exactly what we are doing.
If you have already complained to the other organisation, and you are not happy with their reply, then we will consider dealing with your complaint at Stage 2. If your complaint is about something we have provided jointly with another organisation, for example, a package of care from both health and social care staff, we will look at your complaint together and usually send your complaint to them and make sure they deal with it. We will tell you exactly what we are doing.
Welsh Language, Standards & Compliance
The Welsh Language (Wales) Measure 2011 established a legal framework to impose duties on certain organisations to comply with standards in relation to the Welsh language by way of sub-legislation (Welsh Language Regulation Standards). The standards issued to Rhondda Cynon Taf County Borough Council are listed in ‘Rhondda Cynon Taf County Borough Council Compliance Notice – Section 44 Welsh Language (Wales) Measure 2011’.
All our standards, including Service Delivery, Policy Making & Operational are available to view, online at www.rctcbc.gov.uk/WelshServices or at any of our reception centres.
Complaints or Concerns regarding the Welsh Language will follow the timeframes and steps highlighted in the Council’s policy. The Council will make sure that the investigating officers consult with any relevant legislation before determining whether the authority or service area has acted in accordance with legislative requirements or in line with approved policies and procedures.
Officers are aware of the Welsh Language Standards having attended training, and the Complaints and Concerns Policy via briefings. Officers will follow this corporate approach when dealing with a complaint concerning the Welsh Language and our Standards and are able to consult with the authority’s Compliance Officer and Service Manager for the Welsh Language for further advice.
If you feel that the complaint has not been resolved satisfactorily or that someone is interfering with your freedom to use Welsh, you may complain directly to the Welsh Language Commissioner. You can contact the Welsh Language Commissioner by:
- Phone: 0845 6033221
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Writing to: The Welsh Language Commissioner, Market Chambers, 5-7 St Mary Street, Cardiff CF10 1AT
- Alternatively call in to any of our reception centres who hold a copy of the Commissioners Guide to making a complaint.
Compliment, comment and suggestion?
Our aim is to deliver high quality services to the people who use them. If you have a suggestion about how our services could be improved, we would welcome your comments.
If you are pleased with the service you have received from us, you can let us know by contacting the Representation and Complaints Unit directly. We will pass the information to the person, the team or the organisation responsible for that service.
Could I complain to anyone else if I am still not satisfied
The Care Inspectorate Wales regulates all care services in Wales. You can complain directly to them about social care received from care homes and home care agencies, as well as services run by the Council.
You can complain to the Public Services Ombudsman about any aspect of public services. However, the Ombudsman prefers people to use the Council’s complaint process first.
Social Care Wales regulates professional social care workers and has the power to look into allegations of misconduct. The Commissioners for Children and Older People can also investigate complaints.
To contact our complaints officer(s):
The Representation and Complaints Unit
Dinas Isaf East
Tonypandy CF40 1NY
Telephone: (01443) 425003