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How do I make a complaint?

What can I complain about?

There will be times in your life when things can go very well and there may be other times when things can go wrong. If you are not happy about something to do with your care then it is your right to make a complaint. Some of the things that can make you unhappy could be that:

  • You feel you haven’t been treated fairly
  • You are unhappy with your care plan
  • You are not happy where you are living
  • Decisions being made are taking too long, which is making you worry and no one is telling you what is happening
  • You’re are not allowed to do the same things as your friends
  • You’re not happy that everyone knows your business

It is your right to be treated fairly and unless you tell someone that you are unhappy, things may not change. A complaint can help to make things better for you and maybe even other young people like you. A complaint is not about getting you or other people into trouble, it’s about making sure that you are being listened to.

If you want to make a complaint, there are three steps (also known as stages).

Stage 1:
This is called the local stage where you speak to your social worker or the team manager about what is bothering you. You can also speak to the Complaints Manager Patience Wilson on 0207 926 6335 or 0207 926 9777. You can have support from your foster carer, friend, advocate or someone that you trust to do this. They should try to sort out the problem within ten working days.

Stage 2:
If you still think that there is a problem, the complaints manager will ask for an independent person (someone who doesn’t work for Lambeth Council) to look into it for you. This is a formal investigation and you should be told within 25 working days about what will happen. A report will also be written up and senior social care manager will go through this with you.

Stage 3:
If you are still not happy then a review panel will look into this for you. The panel is made up of three people who do not work for Lambeth Council. They will try to sort the problem within 30 working days and will let you know the result.