We value your feedback
We need to know if our services are being provided effectively and are meeting your needs.
Please let us know if our staff or services have been helpful by calling or emailing us. Our contact details are below.
If you are unhappy with any part of our service, please let the staff member you normally deal with know. They will try to settle the matter straight away.
If you are still not satisfied, you can contact a manager at PACT who will try to resolve your complaint.
Tel: 0300 456 4800
PACT’s complaints procedure
We realise that despite our best efforts, sometimes things can go wrong and in such instances we want to hear from you so that we can address this. We regard concerns and complaints as an opportunity to turn a negative experience into a positive one, as well as an opportunity for us to learn and to improve how we do things.
Who can make a complaint using this procedure?
If we provide a service to you, or someone acting for you, you can express a concern or complaint about that service. Adults, adoptive parents, children and young people can use these procedures to make a complaint about the services we provide.
What if I need help to make a complaint?
If you need help with your complaint, please contact us or the Children’s Commissioner. We can help children, young people and adults with additional needs to find an independent advocate (someone to act on their behalf) to support them to make a complaint. If your first language is not English, let us know and we can assist you.
We would expect complaints to start at Level 1 but if you are unhappy with the response you are given or feel it more appropriate you can escalate to Level 2 or Level 3.
We will always try to resolve any issues and concerns quickly and effectively, as we appreciate early and simple resolution benefits all parties concerned.
If you are unhappy with the service provided we hope that you will feel able to tell the person who is working with you. PACT encourages service users to engage in a conversation with the person you are working with promptly and attempt to resolve any issues or problems at this stage in an open and communicative way.
If however you would prefer to not to speak to the person you are working with or if your concern is about the person you are working with you can contact their manager, either by telephone, letter or email, or by asking to see them. Most problems can be sorted or solved by discussing them with the people who manage the service. (If you are not clear who the relevant manager is, see Further Notes below.)
In these instances, and where minimal investigation is required, managers may use an Informal Resolution process to resolve the situation. To do this we will:
- Discuss your concerns with you
- Keep a written record of the issue
- Make an effort to resolve the issue within 28 working days of hearing your concern
- Provide you with an outcome either by phone or in writing (as agreed) within the above time frame.
If you are dissatisfied with the response received from the manager you may choose to escalate your concern to Level 3. Escalated concerns must be submitted to the CEO as per the below process within 28 days of the receipt of any response received in Level 2.
If you are unhappy with the responses received at Level 2 and feel your concern/ complaint has not been resolved satisfactorily you should write to the chief executive officer (CEO) unless the concern/ complaint is about the CEO, in which case your concern/ complaint should be addressed to the Chair of the Board of Trustees. Any Level 3 complaint must be made in writing, either by email or letter and must contain full details of your complaint and an outline of why you remain dissatisfied.
Your complaint will be formally acknowledged within five working days, and the CEO/ chair of trustees may look into your complaint or arrangements made for a senior member of staff or appropriate person from within PACT to investigate. The appointed individual will speak to individuals who have been involved (this could be contractors, volunteers, staff or other service users) or who are named in your complaint and review all previous correspondence. They will address each element of your complaint and set out all their findings, conclusions and recommendations in a report or letter that will initially be shared with the CEO (if the CEO hasn’t led the enquiry themselves), outlining any actions PACT plans to undertake.
You will receive this within 28 working days of your Level 3 complaint being received by PACT – unless there is a justified reason why this is not possible, in which case you will be alerted to any revised time frames.
If you are not satisfied with the response from the CEO/ chair of trustees you have the right to appeal to PACT’s board of Trustees. You are required to write again to the CEO within 28 working days of receipt of PACT’s response to your Level 3 complaint. You are required to explain why you are still not happy with PACT’s response and you should highlight what outcome you are looking to achieve.
Within 14 days of the receipt of the above, the CEO will appoint an Independent Investigating Officer to examine the complaint. The independent officer will then be given six weeks to examine all the previous information and correspondence regarding your complaint and you will be invited to a meeting to discuss their conclusions and final decision.
The independent officer will make any recommendations within their report about the complaint and share this with the CEO. The CEO will consider the recommendations of the officer and will write to you within 14 days of receiving the independent officers written report summarising their recommendations along with a copy of the report. You will then have the opportunity to review the report and recommendations and submit any final written feedback or comments to the CEO within 14 days of receipt of the report.
Any final written feedback must clearly outline if you still remain unsatisfied or if you feel any amendments should be made to the report or recommendations. At the determination of the CEO, if required or appropriate your final response, the report and all relevant documentation will be presented to a panel of three PACT trustees who will have had no involvement with the complaint. They will review your final feedback and all documents and provide a written response with a final outcome within 28 working days. A copy of this final response from the Trustees will also be shared with the CEO.
This will conclude PACT’s complaints procedure.
- On points of law, complainants should consult a solicitor
- Please indicate with any concern/ complaint if your first language is not English
- At any level a complainant may be accompanied by a friend/family member but not a legal representative
- Confidentiality agreements regarding PACT’s work will be maintained
- If you are unsure who a worker’s line manager is please contact PACT’s offices 7 Southern Court, South Street, Reading, RG1 4QS Telephone 0118 938 7600 – E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Concerns and complaints that reach level 3 will be recorded as formal complaints.
If, having gone through all the levels above, you are still not satisfied with the outcome, if appropriate or where applicable, you will be told of other avenues for complaint, for example Ofsted.
The Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills can be contacted at:
Tel: 0300 123 1231 (General Helpline)
General Enquiries: email@example.com
Address: Piccadilly Gate, Store Street, Manchester, M1 2WD
The Children’s Commissioner for England promotes and protects children’s rights in England and can be contacted at:
Tel: 020 7783 8330 (general enquiries) or 0800 528 0731 (advice line for children and young people)
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org (advice for children and young people) or
Address: Sanctuary Buildings, 20 Great Smith Street, London, SW1P 3BT
National Minimum Standards for adoption
As an adoption agency, PACT is committed to meeting the national minimum standards set out in the regulatory framework of the Care Standards Act 2000.
The regulations require adoption and adoption support agencies to be managed effectively and efficiently, and ensure that children’s needs are met.
Under regulation 25.11, the agency must demonstrate it has a written policy and procedural guidelines on considering and responding to representations and complaints in accordance with legal requirements and relevant statutory guidance.
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