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Policy statement 

Age Cymru Gwent aims to provide high-quality services and to be responsive to the wants and needs of service users. 

Service users, their families, carers and professionals who have requested or been referred for a service have the right to raise concerns, objections or complaints about the service. They also have a right to receive a response from the Charity. All concerns and complaints from service users or others will be taken seriously, listened to carefully, investigated thoroughly where necessary, and responded to with respect and courtesy. 

The purpose of this policy is to: 

  • enable service users to make informal and formal complaints and let Age Cymru Gwent know about things that have gone wrong or caused concern 
  • improve the quality of services by taking notice of the views of people affected by the services, building on what is good and changing what needs improving 
  • ensure that Age Cymru Gwent takes users’ views seriously and follows up on any complaints 
  • protect the interests of individual users of services 
  • protect employees and volunteers, enabling them to deal with complaints consistently and fairly 

A complaint shall mean an oral or written expression of dissatisfaction or concern relating to the everyday operations of the services and activities provided by Age Cymru Gwent. This dissatisfaction could include the actions of Charity’s employees and volunteers, their failure to act, or delay in acting, which requires the Charity to account for its conduct. 

Scope of Policy 

This policy will apply to all employees and volunteers of Age Cymru Gwent. It also provides policy information for users to make a complaint. 

The Complaints Procedure 

There are three distinct stages to the procedure: 

  • Step 1 – The Informal stage
  • Step 2 – The Formal stage 
  • Step 3 – The Appeals stage 

Step 1 – The Informal stage 

In the first instance, some concerns or complaints will, by their nature, be easy to resolve immediately, to everyone’s satisfaction. The complaint or concern should be raised with the employee or volunteer providing the service. The employee or volunteer will address the complaint raised in line with Age Cymru Gwent’s values and missions. There is further guidance for employees and volunteers on how to deal with a complaint appropriately in appendix (i) of this policy. Most issues will usually be resolved in this way. 

Step 2 – The Formal stage 

If the complaint is unresolved utilising Step 1- The Informal stage, this should be put in writing (assistance can be arranged if required through an independent advocacy service) and sent to; 

Age Cymru Gwent,
Quality and Compliance Lead,
12, Baneswell Road, 
NP20 4BP. 

Or via email to: 

An acknowledgement of the complaint will be made to the complainant in writing within 5 days via the original format the written complaint was received, i.e. in writing or via email.  

A response to the complaint will be formally made within 28 working days of receipt. There are situations where a full investigation might need to take place, so it might take longer than 28 days to respond. In such circumstances, Age Cymru Gwent will contact the complainant to advise of an extension.  

Step 3 - The Appeals Stage 

If the complainant is not satisfied with the response to the complaint, they can appeal the decision by writing to the Chief Executive Officer (CEO). This must be in writing and sent via the main head office, or email address noted in Step 2-The Formal stage.  

The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) will arrange a meeting with the Board of Trustees where a complaints panel will be formed within 21 days of the complaint appeal. 

The complaints panel will consist of 2 members of the Board of Trustees. The complaints panel will then review the complaint, seek the views of those involved in the complaint, investigate the actions and seek to obtain any other relevant information.  

The complaints panel will endeavour to reach its decision within 28 working days and notify the complainant accordingly. Where this proves impracticable due to the complexity of the case or external factors such as a wait for a key piece of information, the complaints panel will issue an interim report within this time. 

Should the complainant or other interested party be dissatisfied with the decision of the complaints panel formed by the Board of Trustees, they can request an appeal. Such an appeal must be based either on the grounds that: 

  • the procedure followed by the complaints panel of the Board of Trustees was incorrect,  
  • or because new information has come to light.  

Should this be the case, a person of their own choice may represent the complainant. A new complaints panel will be convened by 2 new members of the Board of Trustees to consider any further representations within 21 working days of such a request. The decision of the new complaints panel will then be final, and the process will conclude. 

Complaints of a serious nature involving employees or volunteers. 

Should there be a serious complaint involving any abuse from employees or volunteers, the organisation will report it to the relevant body in line with the CK- Safeguarding policy. 

Reports will be made, depending on the relevancy of the complaint to bodies such as: 

  • Local Authority Safeguarding Team 
  • Police 
  • Information Commissioners Office (ICO) 
  • Care Inspectorate Wales (CIW) 
  • Charity Commission (CC) 

The Quality and Compliance Lead will be responsible for making the report in consultation with the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and the Board of Trustees. 

In such a situation, employees and volunteers will be treated in accordance with the AB-Disciplinary policy. 

Complaints about other organisations 

Complaints about the National Health Service (NHS), Social Services (SS) or other Statutory Authorities cannot be dealt with by Age Cymru Gwent in line with this policy. They must be referred to the appropriate body concerned. If a user requires support to submit a complaint to another body, information on the most appropriate support and services available to help deal with the complaint will be provided. In most cases, referrals for support in dealing with a complaint to a statutory body can be made to an Independent Advocacy Service. 

Complaints about another Age Cymru partnership or Age UK group must be passed to the Quality and Compliance Lead, who will pass them on to the organisation concerned.  Age Cymru Gwent will monitor the progress of such complaints to ensure that Age Cymru Gwent users are satisfied with the outcome. 

Complaints about Age Cymru Gwent fundraising activities 

Age Cymru Gwent are a member of the Fundraising Standards Board, and we support and use their Code of Fundraising Practice. A copy of our Fundraising Promise can be found in appendix (ii). 

If any public member has concerns regarding our fundraising activities, they should direct their complaints, in the first instance, to the Quality and Complaint Lead as per the details in Stage 2-The Formal stage (page 2 of this policy). They will investigate such concerns and respond fully to the complainant within 28 days of receiving the complaint. 

If our answers are not satisfactory, the matter may be referred to the Fundraising Standards Board, who will investigate all complaints that are concerned with a potential breach of the Institute of Fundraising’s Code of Fundraising Practice or a breach of the Fundraising Promise, provided that the complaint has first been raised with the charity concerned, but is not satisfied with the answer received. 

Full details of the Code of Practice and the complaints procedure may be found at 


Those making a complaint will be given the opportunity to discuss their complaint in the first instance. This could be with the employee, volunteer or line manager of a particular service. See a copy of the Guidelines for employees and volunteers on dealing with a complaint appropriately in appendix (i). 

After receiving a complaint, complainants must be offered a copy of Age Cymru Gwent’s Complaints Policy and Complaints Information Leaflet (appendix iii). Assistance can be provided in understanding, interpreting or translating its effective use if needed.  

When someone makes a complaint to an employee or volunteer, whether informal or formal, this must be noted on the complaints log form in appendix (iv). This should be provided and discussed with the line manager in the first instance so that appropriate action can be taken. 

The line manager must consider the individual contract of service provision and provide details of the complaint to the commissioning body as per the contract. This should be completed in consultation with the Operations Manager and Chief Operating Officer. 

The line managers must provide the complaints form in appendix (iv) to the Quality and Compliance Lead at Age Cymru Gwent so that all complaints are logged. A quarterly complaints report will be submitted to the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and the Board of Trustees to discuss and agree on any service improvement or policy change. 

If the complaint is serious in nature involving an employee or volunteer, the line manager must speak to the Quality and Compliance Lead and Operations Manager immediately. This is so the appropriate action can be discussed and taken in consultation with the Chief Operations Officer, Chief Executive Officer and Head of People in line with the CK Safeguarding policy and AB Disciplinary policy. 

Equality Impact Assessment 



1. Name of policy being assessed? 

Complaints Policy 

2. Summary of aims and objectives of the policy? 

To inform employees of Age Cymru Gwent of the organisation’s complaints policy and procedures. 

3. What involvement and consultation has been done in relation to this policy? (e.g. with relevant groups and stakeholders) 

Reviewing the current ACG policy in circulation. 

Reviewing other Age UK complaint policies and procedures. 

Reviewing service contracts. 

Feedback from the SLT team. 

4. Who is affected by the policy? 

Employees, volunteers and service users. 

5. What are the arrangements for monitoring and reviewing the actual impact of the policy? 

The policy will be reviewed by the Board of Trustees and enacted for a 3-year period.  

Annual policy reviews will be completed based on feedback from those affected by the policy. 

MSN forms are created to ask for feedback on the policy from all internal stakeholders. 

Analysis of the complaints received and the outcomes achieved. 

Protected Characteristic Group 

Is there a potential for positive or negative impact? 

Please explain and give examples of any evidence/data used 

Action to address negative impact (e.g. adjustment to the policy) 





Gender reassignment 




Marriage or civil partnership 




Pregnancy and maternity 








Religion or belief 




Sexual orientation 




Sex (gender) 








Other (caring responsibilities) 






Explanation / justification 

Is it possible the proposed policy or activity or change in policy could discriminate or unfairly disadvantage people? 


Final Decision 

Tick the relevant box 

Include any explanation / justification required 

No barriers identified, therefore activity will proceed. 




You can decide to stop the policy at some point because the data shows bias towards one or more groups 



You can adapt or change the policy in a way which you think will eliminate the bias 



Barriers and impact identified, however having considered all available options carefully, there appear to be no other proportionate ways to achieve the aim of the policy or practice (e.g. in extreme cases or where positive action is taken). Therefore, you are going to proceed with caution with this policy or practice knowing that it may favour some people less than others, providing justification for this decision 




Completed by: Quality and Compliance Lead 

Date: 19.01.23 



Nature of Change 

Review Date 




Jan 23 

Review of policy 

Jan 24