1. Nelson CARES Society encourages community members who have concerns/complaints about the society’s services or delivery of services to contact the appropriate Program Supervisor/Coordinator either in person or via telephone to discuss their concerns/complaints.  All concerns/complaints will be heard and responded to in a timely manner.  Resolution of verbal complaints will be recorded and submitted to the Program Manager for review and processing.
  2. If complaint remains unresolved, complainants are advised to submit a written complaint directly to the Program Manager. Complainants may be provided the society’s Complaint Form.  Written complaints may also come in the form of a letter and should, at a minimum, include the following:
    1. The date(s) and time(s) that the incident occurred;
    2. A brief description of the nature of the incident;
    3. The names of all employees and clients involved;
    4. Other details relevant to the complaint.
  3. Nelson CARES society will only accept complaints related to the operations of its programs and services. Nelson CARES Society will not respond on a client’s behalf to complaints made against the client. Any complaint of a legal nature made against a client will be forwarded to the client and/or (if applicable) the client’s Alternate Decision Maker and to any authority designated to act on the client’s behalf with respect to complaints of a legal nature. The client will be told about all legal and advocacy services available to him/her.
  4. The Program Manager will conduct a thorough investigation of the complaint. The investigation will include interviews with the person making the complaint, employees and clients involved. The investigation will also take into consideration all policies, standards and regulations related to the incident. When the Program Manager’s investigation is completed, he/she will determine whether or not the complaint is valid.

A complaint is deemed valid if:

  1. A neighbour or community member suffered damage to her/his property or assets; or
  2. The rights of the person making the complaint are unreasonably violated; and
  3. The complaint is related to the program and its operation.

The Program Manager will respond in writing to the complainant. Responses to complaints will not contain personal client information to which the person complaining is not entitled.

Responses to invalid complains will include:

  1. The reason the complaint has been deemed invalid;
  2. Reference to all applicable policies, standards and regulations used to make the decision;
  3. The contact information for the Nelson CARES Society’s Executive Director to whom an appeal may be made.
  4. If the appeal remains unresolved from the complainant’s perspective, the names and addresses of external resources to further their complaint will be provided.

Responses to valid complaints will include:

  1. Reference to all applicable policies, standards and regulations used to make the decision;
  2. An apology and/or offer of compensation (if appropriate);
  3. A description of all steps that will be taken to avoid another occurrence of the incident.
  4. The Program Manager will respond to all complaints within 10 working days of receipt of the written complaint. The Program Manager will meet with the complainant(s), at the complainant’s request.
  5. If not satisfied with the resolution, the complainant may appeal the resolution by sending a request for appeal in writing to the society’s Executive Director who will investigate the matter and provide a written conclusion within 20 working days.
  6. If a complaint may result in a potential liability to the program or the society, the Program Manager will notify the Executive Director immediately to seek consultation as to how to proceed with the investigation.
  7. All complaints that may result in legal action against or potential liability to the program or the society may be reviewed by legal counsel, prior to any response being made to the complainant.