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Can I get independent support with making a complaint about the adult social care services or care services paid for by the local authority?

There are different reasons people make complaints. Most of the time, people want to ask questions. They want to understand what happened and why and find out what action can be taken to put things right. They might also want an apology. Complaints can also help services to make changes so that what has happened does not happen to someone else.

It can be difficult to speak up when you are not happy with your care and treatment. The complaints process can be long and complicated, and you may need some help or support with the process.

This support can be provided by an advocate.

The advocacy people provide statutory and non-statutory advocacy for adults who need advocacy support with specific issues.

You may be eligible for support with an adult social care complaint from an advocate if you have:

  • An eligible health or social care need

  • A learning disability

  • A physical disability or impairment

  • Mental health needs

  • Are elderly or vulnerable

  • An acquired brain injury

  • Are on the autistic spectrum

  • Any other issues that cause them “significant difficulty” in accessing services

Advocate support may be provided by The Advocacy People or by its partners who provide specialist advocacy services in several different areas. If you are eligible for advocacy support: Our advocates will:

  • take time to understand your situation

  • help you decide what you want to achieve by making a complaint

  • help you understand the complaints process

  • explore your options at every stage of the complaint

  • help you decide what you want to do and how you want to do it

  • act on your direction if you don’t feel able to act yourself

  • help you write letters to the right people

Our advocates won’t:

  • investigate your complaint

  • make any decisions for or about you

  • tell you what to do or give advice.

Our advocacy services are independent from the Adult social care services and the local authority. Please note that we are unable to help with

  • taking legal action

  • employee disciplinary procedures

Who can refer?

Anyone can make a complaint about their care or services or the care or services someone else has received that was provided or paid for by Adult Social Care or local authority, including via direct payment or an individual budget, or it is privately funded in either a residential or nursing home, personal care, or support for them to live independently in their home.

If you are making the complaint on behalf of someone else, we will usually need the person’s written consent, but we understand that sometimes this is not possible. For example, you may wish to make a complaint on behalf of a recently deceased relative.

If you are under 16, and you can show you are able to make up your own mind about care or services, you can refer yourself. We hope you will chat with your parents or someone you trust when making a complaint, but you can choose not to. Confidentiality We will not talk about you outside The Advocacy People without you telling us we can, unless you tell us something which makes us think you or someone else may be:

  1. at risk of serious harm or abuse

  2. committing a serious criminal offence

or if the law tells us we must. We will always try to tell you if we are going to do this.

For more information

You can check if we offer this service in your area using the map on our website or get in touch:

Call: 0330 440 9000


Text: PEOPLE to 80800 followed by your message

Write: PO Box 375, Hastings, TN34 9HU

What about explaining that people can access legal advice to make a complaint through Community Care lawyers, some of who have legal aid contracts/ or other signposting?

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