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Due to essential maintenance, this website may be unavailable on Tuesday 11 August 2020 from 8pm to midnight. Apologies for any problems this may cause.

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Complaints about children's services

Please tell us if you think something has gone wrong so we can put it right.


Administration of children's services complaints during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic

We're continuing to provide services in these unprecedented times. This is an ongoing situation and service information could change at short notice. We're following government advice and will be reviewing all our services in line with the latest information.

The government guidance on social distancing and self-isolation is impacting on how we deliver services to children and families across Derbyshire. We're taking action to maintain services and prioritise key areas during the coronavirus (COVID 19) pandemic.

As a priority, operational services are being restructured to enable sufficient staff to be available for those in need. This means that staff dealing with complaints may be reallocated to deal with urgent cases. Please be assured that we take all complaints seriously and will work in flexible ways to ensure that your issues are dealt with as soon as we are able. 

During this time we'll continue to acknowledge complaints, and will try to meet statutory timescales, but will not be able to provide a specific response date. Complaints already received will be processed as staff become available to investigate them.

Many staff are now working from home which makes our access to postal complaints limited. If possible, please contact us by email: cs.complaints@derbyshire.gov.uk

You can still leave a message for the complaints team tel: 01629 538435. Your message will be converted to an email and forwarded to us. Please provide email contact details wherever possible.

If you need help with your complaint, please read the information on advocacy:

If we've responded to your complaint and you now want to contact the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman, please note that they are not taking any new complaints due to COVID 19 restrictions. They will make announcements on their website.

We'll resume our full complaints service as soon as possible. In the meantime, thank you for your patience and understanding at this difficult time.

If you're a child or young person who wants to make a complaint we will arrange an advocate for you. This is someone who will support you in making your complaint. Advocates may also be available for adults who need help.

There's a statutory procedure for handling complaints about services provided under Part III of the Children Act 1989 which sets out who can make a complaint and what can be complained about. Where a complaint falls outside this statutory remit it will be dealt with under out corporate complaints procedure.

Your first step is to speak to your worker or their manager. Or you can Call Derbyshire tel: 01629 533190 if you'd like to speak to someone else.

You can ask to speak to a quality assurance manager if you're not happy with your worker or their manager dealing with your complaint.

We'll make sure your complaint is dealt with confidentially, quickly, carefully and fairly and we'll apologise and put things right if we've made a mistake.

You can complain if you're a child or young person who is in care or in need in some other way. Someone may be able to complain on your behalf, but we'll check to see if this is your wish.

You can complain if you're the child’s parent or someone who has parental responsibility if a child is in care, a child in need, leaving care, subject to special guardianship or adopted.

There are also some other people who can complain – please ask. If you cannot complain we'll advise you of next steps.

What happens when you complain

You'll receive a letter confirming your complaint. A local manager will look into your complaint. They may want to talk with you about your complaint. You'll also get a reply in writing.

You'll find details of our complaints and representations procedure attached to this page.