We’re committed to providing excellent customer service to all our residents and visitors. However, there may be times when you feel unhappy with the service we’ve provided.
Your feedback is very important to us. Knowing what you think or want helps us improve our services.
Our complaints procedure is for anyone who wants to complain about a service they’ve received from Medway Council.
If you make a complaint, we’ll investigate it thoroughly and let you know the outcome. We’ll be fair and we’ll try to put things right if we’ve made a mistake.
Our complaints procedure has two stages:
The people providing the service are usually best placed to resolve any problem or concern you have. So, at stage one we’ll ask the service to consider your complaint and try to sort things out quickly.
We aim to acknowledge your complaint within 3 working days of receiving it.
And we aim to get back to you within 10 working days with a full written response. If we cannot reply to you within this time, we’ll let you know why and tell you when you can expect a reply.
The following services use different complaints processes and timetables:
- schools and education
- religious education
- adult social care
- child services
Coronavirus (COVID-19) and response deadlines
We're working hard to maintain a good level of service to our customers. But as the current situation is likely to impact on the time it takes to investigate and respond to complaints, we may be unable to meet our normal response deadlines. Thank you for your patience.
How to make a stage one complaint
For security, the online form will ask you to start again after 30 minutes of inactivity.
Therefore, you may want to have the following details to hand before you start to complete the form:
- when, where and what happened
- supporting evidence such as documents or photos, if relevant
- the service or person you're complaining about
- the person you're representing, if you're making a complaint on their behalf
You can also complain using the following methods:
- Write to: Customer Relations Team, Medway Council, Gun Wharf, Dock Road, Chatham, Kent ME4 4TR
- In person at a local Community hub
- Phone: 01634 333 333
- Text relay: 18001 01634 333 333
Stage two gives you the opportunity to have your complaint looked at again if you’re not happy with our response at stage one. Your complaint will be reviewed by a customer relations investigations officer.
When you receive your stage one response, you'll be advised how to escalate your complaint to stage two, should you remain dissatisfied with our response.
Our Customer Relations Team will acknowledge your stage two complaint within three working days, and will work with the service area to investigate and resolve your complaint.
We may need to phone you to discuss your complaint during our investigation.
We aim to provide you with a written response within 15 working days. If we're unable to provide you with a response within this time, we'll let you know the reason for the delay and give you a date when we expect to reply.
Help from others
We may need to contact you to ask for consent to investigate your complaint.
What cannot be looked at under our complaints procedure
You cannot use our complaints procedure to tell us about service requests, requests for information or appeals.
Service requests or enquiries
If you’ve completed a complaints form and we feel that we can solve the issue more quickly by passing your request to a service, this will be logged as a ‘service request’. The service will take appropriate action, and may contact you, although you will not receive a formal complaint response.
You can report fly-tipping, missed bin collections, and other kinds of problems online. Report a problem online.
Appeals or tribunals
Some council services such as planning and parking have statutory appeal processes with their own time limits. If this is the case, we will let you know straight away what they are and what you need to do. We cannot investigate your complaint until the appeal process has been completed.
What to do if you’re still not satisfied
We hope that our complaints procedure will help to sort out quickly and successfully any problems you may have with the way our services are provided. However, if you’re still not satisfied with the way we handle your complaint, or the conclusions we reach, you can take your complaint to the Local Government Ombudsman.
The Local Government Ombudsman is a free independent national service which investigates complaints against councils. You can complain to the Ombudsman at any time but they will expect you to have tried to resolve matters through our internal procedures first.