Complaints Handling System
We will investigate all complaints in a fair and impartial way. We will treat your complaint confidentially and only discuss it with relevant staff on a “need to know” basis. If you make a complaint we will not meet it with hostility or defensiveness. We understand that complaints can generate positive and helpful discussion about the services we provide.
Complaint files will be kept separately from any relevant files within individual service areas (for example housing, planning, environment, and so on.). The making of a complaint will not in any way affect your future dealings with the Council.
We want to resolve your problem to the best of our ability and your satisfaction. We want to learn from our mistakes. This complaint handling system provides valuable feedback and helps us to provide a better service in the future.
How to Make an Enquiry/Complaint
We aim to provide high-quality services for all members of the public. We accept that things can sometimes go wrong and we need to know when you are not happy with our service.
When you tell us what you are not happy with, we can try to put things right. In future, we can try to get it right first time.
We will treat your complaint seriously and deal with your complaint positively. We see any complaints as an opportunity to improve our services.
What is a complaint?
A Complaint is when you tell us you’re not happy. For example, If:
- We do not deliver a service on time,
- We give you the wrong Information,
- You receive a poor quality service,
- You have a complaint about a member of staff, or
- You have a complaint about our policy
We are committed to putting you first and providing a quality customer service. This includes dealing with any complaint you may have.
- We will deal with your complaint quickly and fairly.
- We will tell you what is happening with your complaint and we will do everything we can to help you.
- We will treat the information you give us in confidence.
- We will explain our decision.
- We will use complaints to review and improve the way we provide services.
- If you make a complaint, it will not affect your rights to receive or use a council service.
How to make a complaint
You can make a complaint by:
- completing our on-line form
- emailing email@example.com
- phoning 01 4149000 from 9am to 5pm (Monday to Thursday and 9am - 4.30pm on Fridays)
- visiting our Customer Care Centres in person at County Hall, Tallaght or Clondalkin Civic Centre
- writing to: Corporate Performance and Change Management Department. South Dublin County Council County Hall, Tallaght, Dublin 24
If you prefer, you can ask another person, a friend or relative to deal with us on your behalf.
When you make a complaint, please give us your complete contact information; tell us your name and address, your phone number and your email address if you have one.
Informal complaint - Step 1
We will try to deal with your complaint informally. This means that you should phone or take your complaint to the office or person who dealt with your enquiry.
Our staff will do their best to settle your complaint without you needing to do anything else.
Formal complaint - Step 2
If you have spoken to the relevant officer about your complaint and they have not been able to put things right, or you are not happy with the result, the next step is for you to make a formal complaint. Your complaint will now be dealt with by the Manager of the service involved.
Please make your complaint by completing our on-line form, emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, or by writing to Corporate Performance and Change Management Department, South Dublin County Council, County Hall, Tallaght, Dublin 24. Please make sure that you give us your complete contact information, tell us your name and address, your phone number and your email address if you have one.
We will contact to you within three working days to let you know we have received your complaint. We will give you a reference number and the name of the person investigating your complaint. This information will make it easier for you to contact us if you need to.
- Investigate your complaint;
- Take any necessary action; and
- Contact you within 15 working days to explain our decision and to tell you the outcome of your complaint.
If your complaint will take longer to investigate, and so we cannot send you a reply within 15 working days, we will write to you and let you know when you will receive a reply.
Complaint Review - Step 3
If you have been through the formal complaint process at Step 2 of the Complaints Procedure and you are still not happy with the outcome, you can contact the Customer Care Officer in relation to the service about which you have a complaint. The Customer Care Officer will confirm within five working days that we have received your complaint. The Customer Care Officer will then arrange for your complaint to be considered by a more senior member of staff in the relevant Department.
We will contact you within 20 working days with a full written reply.
Office of the Ombudsman
We hope that we have been able to resolve your complaint satisfactorily. However, if you remain unhappy with our response then you can refer your complaint to the Office of the Ombudsman. The Ombudsman is fair, independent, and free to use.
The Ombudsman will ask you for details of your complaint and a copy of this letter/email (our final response to your complaint). The best way to contact the Ombudsman is by:
- Clicking on the ‘Make A Complaint’ link at www.ombudsman.ie
- Writing to: Office of the Ombudsman, 6 Earlsfort Terrace, Dublin 2, D02 W773 or
- Calling the Ombudsman on 01 639 5600 if you have any queries or if you need help making your complaint.