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Complaints and feedback

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1.1 Purpose 

This policy is intended to ensure Griefline handles complaints fairly, efficiently and effectively. 

This policy provides guidance for people who wish to make a complaint, including Griefline staff and volunteers, on the principles and processes governing how feedback, complaints and compliments will be handled. 

1.2 Scope 

This policy applies to all Griefline staff (paid and volunteer), contractors, students and our Board. It also applies to service users, stakeholders and members of the general public. 

Internal complaints and grievances (being made by paid or volunteer staff) should be directed to Griefline’s COO and will be handled in line with Griefline’s grievance policy. 

1.3 Commitment 

Griefline expects all staff (paid and volunteer) to be committed to fair, effective and efficient complaint handling. 

The COO and CMO are responsible for promoting a culture that values complaints and their effective resolution. The COO and CMO will ensure this by; 

  • Reporting to the Board on complaint handling 
  • Ensuring staff are aware of Griefline’s compliant policy and complaint handling procedures 
  • Providing support and direction to staff (paid and volunteer) for handling complaints 
  • Encouraging staff (paid and volunteer) to be alert to complaints and assist in the handling or complaints to resolve them promptly 
  • Encouraging staff to make recommendations for process and system improvements 
  • Regularly reviewing reports and complaint trends and issues arising from complaints 
  • Support recommendations for service, staff and complaint handling improvements arising from the analysis of complaint data 

Griefline’s Clinical Services Manager, COO, CMO are responsible for demonstrating and promoting exemplary complaint handling practices. 

They will ensure this by; 

  • Ensuring those who make complaints are heard and treated with empathy, discretion and respect 
  • Comply with relevant policy and associated procedures 
  • Provide regular feedback to the Board on any issues arising from complaints 
  • Take a supportive, no-blame approach when dealing with staff involved in complaints 

All Griefline staff (paid and volunteer) are responsible for understanding and complying with Griefline’s complaint handling practices. They will do this by; 

  • Ensuring those who make complaints are heard, and treated with empathy, discretion and respect 
  • Be aware of our complaint handling policy and procedures 
  • Assist people who wish to make a complaint to access our complaints process 
  • Be alert to complaints and assist staff handling complaints to get them resolved 
  1. Guiding Principles

Griefline’s complaint handling is modelled on the principles of fairness, accessibility, responsiveness and efficiency. 

2.1 Facilitating feedback and complaints 

Griefline is committed to seeking and receiving feedback and complaints about our services, systems, practices, procedures and complaint handling processes. 

Feedback and complaints will be acknowledged within three (3) days. 

People making a complaint will be:  

  • provided with information about our complaints handling process 
  • listened to, treated with respect and involved in the complaint process where appropriate and possible 
  • Provided with reasons for our decisions and any options for review 

Griefline will ensure people making a complaint are not adversely affected because a complaint has been made by them or on their behalf. 

Anonymous Complaints 

Anonymous complaints are welcomed and will be investigated as far as possible. 


Griefline will ensure information about how and where complaints can be made is available on our website. We will ensure our systems to manage complaints are easily understood and accessible to everyone, especially people who may require assistance. 

Making a complaint or providing feedback 

Feedback and complaints can be made in several ways 

  • completing Griefline’s feedback form here   
  • send an email to [email protected] 
  • send a letter by post: 8/181 St Kilda Road, St Kilda. VIC. 3182 

2.2 Responding to complaints 

We will acknowledge receipt of written complaints within three (3) days. 

Griefline will address all complaints with an objective, unbiased and equitable approach. 

We will ensure the person handling a complaint is different from any staff member whose conduct, or service is being complained about. 

Personal information that identifies individuals will only be disclosed or used as permitted under relevant privacy laws and confidentiality obligations. 

2.3 Managing and resolving complaints 

Griefline will provide feedback and outcomes in relation to the complaint, where this has been requested by the person making the complaint. The feedback will address their concerns and provide general information in relation to any corrective actions. No information about the identity of persons involved in the complaint will be disclosed, nor specific details in relation to outcomes for members of staff or the organisation. 

Griefline is committed to being accessible and responsive to all people who make complaints or provide feedback. We will protect staff and volunteers from unfair, unreasonable or abusive behaviour, and if we are unable to work with you directly to respond to your complaint, we will refer to an external organisation to facilitate this. 

Complaint handling 

All complaints and feedback will be reviewed by Griefline’s Feedback Officer. 

The Feedback Officer will facilitate 

  • An assessment and possible investigation of the complaint 
  • Escalation if required 
  • A response or resolution 

Where a person making a complaint is dissatisfied with the outcome, they may contact an external party (such Victorian Ombudsman or Health Complaints Commissioner) 

  1. Accountability and Learning

3.1 Analysis and evaluation of complaints 

Griefline will ensure complaints are recorded in a systematic way so that information can be easily retrieved for reporting and analysis. 

Regular analysis of complaints and feedback reports will be undertaken to monitor trends, measure the quality of our programs and services and make improvements. 

Reports and analysis will be provided to the Griefline Board no less than twice a year. 

3.2 Continuous Improvement 

Griefline is committed to improving the way our organisation operates, including the management of our complaint handling processes. This includes: 

  • Supporting the appropriate resolution of complaints 
  • Recognising and rewarding exemplary complaint handling by staff 
  • Regularly reviewing complaint handling processes and complaint data 
  • Implementing appropriate system and process changes arising out of the analysis of complaints data 




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