SP Ministries views complaints as an opportunity to learn and improve for the future, as well as a chance to put things right for the person [or organisation] that has made the complaint.
Our policy is:
To provide a fair complaints procedure which is clear and easy to use for anyone wishing to make a complaint
To publicise the existence of our complaints procedure so that people know how to contact us to make a complaint
To make sure everyone at SP Ministries knows what to do if a complaint is received
To make sure all complaints are investigated fairly and in a timely way
To make sure that complaints are, wherever possible, resolved and that relationships are repaired
To gather information which helps us to improve what we do.
Definition of a Complaint
A complaint is any expression of dissatisfaction, whether justified or not, about any aspect of SP Ministries– encompassing every area of our works in the UK.
Where Complaints Come From
Complaints may come from any individual, volunteer or organisation who has a legitimate interest in SP Ministries including the general public if something is perceived to be improper. A complaint can be received verbally by email, by writing or by phone (for members only). This policy does not cover complaints from staff, who should refer to SP Ministries’ internal policy on such matters.
All complaint information will be handled sensitively, telling only those who need to know and following any relevant data protection requirements.
Overall responsibility for this policy and its implementation lies with the board of trustees of SP Ministries.
Complaints Procedure of SP Ministries
Publicised Contact Details for Complaints:
Written complaints may be sent to SP Ministries correspondence address at 86 – 90 Paul Street, London, EC2A 4NE or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. All complaints have to be made in writing via email or our website through the complaints form. Any in-person complaint can be made to any member of the senior management team who will then direct the complaint to be put in writing before it can be actioned.
In many cases, a complaint is best resolved by the person responsible for the issue being complained about. If the complaint has been received by that person, they may be able to resolve it swiftly and should do so if possible and appropriate. Whether or not the complaint has been resolved, the complaint information should be passed to the SP Ministries board of trustees within five business days. On receiving the complaint, the board of trustees record it in the complaints Logbook. If it has not already been resolved, they delegate an appropriate person to investigate it and to take appropriate action. If the complaint relates to a specific person, they should be informed and given a fair opportunity to respond.
Complaints should be acknowledged by the person handling the complaint within five working days. The acknowledgement should say who is dealing with the complaint and when the person complaining can expect a reply. A copy of this complaint’s procedure should be attached. Ideally complainants should receive a definitive reply within a month. If this is not possible because for example, an investigation has not been fully completed, a progress report should be sent with an indication of when a full reply will be given. Whether the complaint is justified or not, the reply to the complainant should describe the action taken to investigate the complaint, the conclusions from the investigation, and any action taken as a result of the complaint.
If the complainant feels that the problem has not been satisfactorily resolved at Stage One, they can request that the complaint is reviewed at Board of trustee level. At this stage, the complaint will be passed to the Board of Trustees. The request for Board level review should be acknowledged within five working days of receiving it. The acknowledgement should say who will deal with the case and when the complainant can expect a reply.
The Board of Trustees may investigate the facts of the case themselves or delegate a suitably senior person to do so. This may involve reviewing the paperwork of the case and speaking with the person who dealt with the complaint at Stage One. The person who dealt with the original complaint at Stage One should be kept informed of what is happening. If the complaint relates to a specific person, they should be informed and given a further opportunity to respond. Ideally complainants should receive a definitive reply within a month. If this is not possible because for example, an investigation has not been fully completed, a progress report should be sent with an indication of when a full reply will be given. Whether the complaint is upheld or not, the reply to the complainant should describe the action taken to investigate the complaint, the conclusions from the investigation, and any action taken as a result of the complaint. The decision taken at this stage is final, unless the Board decides it is appropriate to seek external assistance with resolution.
As SP Ministries is a United Kingdom registered charity, the complainant can complain to the UK Charity Regulator after the two stages have been exhausted without a satisfactory solution.
Variation of the Complaints Procedure
The Board of trustees may vary the procedure for good reason. This may be necessary to avoid a conflict of interest, for example, a complaint about a Chair or trustee should not also have the Chair and/or trustee involved as a person leading a Stage Two review.
Monitoring and Learning from Complaints
Complaints are reviewed annually to identify any trends which may indicate a need to take further action.
This policy was last reviewed on 30th August 2019 and is regularly updated as required.