Glasgow City Council

Social Work Complaints

What you need to know?

We welcome both comments and complaints about our services. We define a complaint as "An expression of dissatisfaction by one or more members of the public about the Social Work Service's action or lack of action, or about the standard of service provided by or on behalf of the Social Work Service".

We view complaints positively; feedback from you helps us to improve our services. Complaining will not result in social work staff discriminating against you. Records of any complaint you make will be kept separately from your other records.

If you complain, the people providing you with the service will try to sort out any problems as quickly as possible. They may either speak to you or write to you once they have looked into things. We call this 'frontline resolution'. If you are not happy with this approach, or it fails to sort things out, then you can ask for a formal investigation of your complaint. This takes 20 working days and always results in a written response to you.

How to complain / who to contact?

You can complain in a number of ways:

Social Work Rights and Enquiries Section
Glasgow City Council
Commonwealth House
32 Albion Street
Glasgow
G1 1LH

Phone: 0141 287 0499

Email: SWComplaints@sw.glasgow.gov.uk

If emailing, please provide full details of your complaint together with your name and postal address and the name, postal address and date of birth of the social work service user.

What happens once I've made a complaint?

Our pdf icon complaints handling procedure [629kb] explains what we do when you make a complaint about our services.  For example:

  • We will acknowledge your complaint within 3 days when a formal investigation is underway
  • we will tell you which team will respond to you and the date you can expect a response
  • Sometimes we will need to contact you to get more information from you to help us understand your complaint
  • If you are happy to accept a verbal response during the frontline resolution of your complaint, we will not send you a written response
  • If you are unhappy with our frontline response to your complaint, you can ask us to formally investigate or review your complaint.  If you have any additional information to support your original complaint, you can give that to us or let us know where we can find evidence to support your complaint
  • If you are unhappy with our formal investigation of your complaint, you can refer your complaint to the Scottish Public Services Ombudsman (see section on 'What does the Scottish Public Services Ombudsman do?)

Who else can I complain to?

Some of the services delivered by Social Work Services (either directly or on our behalf) such as day care, residential care, housing support services, respite care, foster care and children's care homes are also regulated by the Care Inspectorate. If dissatisfied with the standard of care offered by these services then you can complain to Care Inspectorate as well as making a complaint to us.

The address for complaints is:

The Care Inspectorate
Compass House
11 Riverside Drive
Dundee DD1 4NY
Phone 0345 600 9527
Email enquiries@careinspectorate.com
Website www.careinspectorate.com

What does the Scottish Public Services Ombudsman do?

The Scottish Public Services Ombudsman (SPSO) is the final stage for complaints about public services in Scotland.  This includes complaints about Scottish councils.  If you remain unhappy, you can ask the SPSO to look at your complaint.  The SPSO cannot normally look at social work complaints:

  • where you have not gone all the way through the council's statutory social work complaints procedure
  • more than 12 months after you became aware of the matter you want to complain about, or
  • that have been or are being considered in court.

You can contact them at:

Freepost SPSO

Phone 0800 377 7330
Fax 0800 377 7331
Text 0790 049 4372
Website www.spso.org.uk

How do I get a Social Work Service?

If you think that you need some help then you, or someone on your behalf, can call Social Care Direct, on 0141 287 0555, for advice and information or to arrange for your needs to be assessed. If you already have a Social Worker then contact your local social work office to request an assessment of your needs. There is no charge for this assessment. The assessment will determine whether you are eligible to receive a service. 

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