How The Barnet Group handles complaints
We know that things can occasionally go wrong. We welcome feedback as a valuable opportunity to learn from mistakes and make improvements for the future and on receiving a complaint, we expect our staff to listen and put things right quickly and informally.
Stage 1 (internal)
If we cannot resolve your complaint when you first report it to us, we will log a formal Stage 1 complaint and send you an acknowledgement that will tell you who is dealing with your complaint and give you their contact details. We always try to reply to complaints within 10 working days but if we need more time to investigate we will tell you why and how long it will take.
Stage 2 (internal)
If you are unhappy with the response to your complaint at Stage 1, you should call or write to us and advise that you wish to escalate to Stage 2 of the complaints process.
A Complaints Officer will ask you the reason why you remain unhappy and what outcome you are looking for. You will need to provide further evidence to support your complaint for it to be considered for escalation and review. We will ensure your complaint is investigated by a senior manager, and we will send you a response within 10 working days. If we need more time to investigate, we will tell you why and how long it will take.
Escalation beyond Stage 2
Landlord Complaints – Stage 3 (external)
If you are unhappy with the response to your complaint at Stage 2, you should call or write to us and advise that you wish to escalate your complaint further.
When our internal complaints procedure is finished, you have the right to ask for your complaint to be considered by a Designated Person. Designated persons are –
- Any ward Councillor
- Any Member of Parliament
- An independent tenant panel
If you wish to have your complaint heard by the tenant panel, you should contact the Complaints and Information Team. A Complaints Officer will ask you the reason why you remain unhappy and what outcome you are looking for and you will need to provide further evidence to support your complaint for it to be considered by the panel.
Our Tenant Panel is made up of Barnet Homes tenants and leaseholders and they will try to work with you and Barnet Homes to resolve the complaint if at all possible. The Tenant Panel will refer the complaint to the Housing Ombudsman Service if they feel it is appropriate and they feel there is nothing further that they or Barnet Homes can reasonably do to resolve your complaint.
Finally, if you would rather not go through the Designated Person stage, the Localism Act 2011 states that you may approach the Housing Ombudsman Service directly after a period of 8 weeks has passed from receiving your Stage 2 response.
You may also approach the Housing Ombudsman Service directly yourself if the Designated Person (member or panel) refuses to refer your complaint; again 8 weeks after receiving your Stage 2 response.
Homelessness and Allocations Complaints – Stage 3 (internal)
If your complaint relates to the homelessness service or housing allocations, if you are unhappy with the response to your complaint at Stage 2, you have the right to have your complaint reviewed by Barnet Homes’ Stage 3 Complaints Panel which includes a Board Member, a Director, and a Head of Service.
If after the Complaints Panel has reviewed your complaint you remain unhappy, you have the right to approach the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman.
Your Choice (Barnet) Complaints
If your complaint relates to any of the Your Choice Barnet schemes, if you remain unhappy following our Stage 2 response you have the right to approach the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman. Information about Your Choice (Barnet) complaints is also on our website, including an Easy Read guide to Complaints and Concerns.
The Barnet Group Complaints Policy
The Barnet Group’s Complaints Policy can be found here.
The Barnet Group (including Barnet Homes and Your Choice (Barnet)
How to complain to The Barnet Group:
In writing to: The Complaints & Information Team, The Barnet Group, Floor 5 Barnet House, 1255 High Road, Whetstone, N20 0EJ
By email to: Talk2Us@barnethomes.org
By telephone to: 0800 389 5225
In person at: Barnet Homes Reception, Floor 2 Barnet House, 1255 High Road, Whetstone, N20 0EJ
Your Local MP or Ward Councillor
You can find your local MP or ward councillors at www.writetothem.com
The Housing Ombudsman
Exchange Tower, Harbour Exchange Square, London, E14 9GE
Telephone: 0300 111 3000
The Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman
In writing to: PO Box 4771, Coventry, CV4 0EH
Telephone: 0300 061 0614
Text “call back” to: 07624 811 595
Support in making a complaint
If you wish to get an advocate to support you in making a complaint, or simply seek some independent advice, there are a number of organisations that can help you, including:
- Telephone Supporter Helpdesk: 0300 330 1234 from Monday – Friday 9am-6pm (excluding bank holidays). Calling this number will cost you less than a local rate call.
- Email: email@example.com
Advocacy in Barnet
- The One Stop Shop, 4-5 The Concourse, Grahame Park, London NW9 5XB (Offices are open 9.30am – 4.00pm, Monday to Friday)
- Tel: 020 8201 3415 or Tel: 020 8201 3148
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Citizen’s Advice Bureau
- Telephone: 03444 111 444
- Other ways to contact the CAB are detailed on their website: https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/about-us/how-we-provide-advice/advice/