Priority 3: Provide Easy Access to Complaints and Advocacy

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A complaints procedure and independent advocacy are available and accessible, well signposted and sufficiently resourced.

All young service users and their carers need to understand their right to make complaints and access independent advocacy services. It’s important to ensure that a clear pathway is in place and accessible to all service users and for carers.

Here’s what young people told us about complaints and advocacy:

  • We should be told how we can make a complaint and access independent (nonstatutory) advocacy and sent information about this as soon as we join the service.
  • There should be both individual and group processes for complaints, including service user groups and meetings.
  • We should be told it is our right to have a second opinion or change or transfer to different service teams
  • Staff should take a proactive style, encouraging use of advocacy services throughout treatment. We shouldn’t be questioned about using advocates.
  • There should be openness and cooperation from professionals. If we complain, there should be no negative effect on care or treatment
  • The involvement of parents or carers should be encouraged.

Talking about Talking Therapies, Year One, March 2011

For more information take a look at this document on how to obtain and effectively use feedback from young people – Effective feedback.

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