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Complaints Policy

Complaints Procedure


Norwich foodbank is committed to delivering a high standard of service to anyone who engages with our work.

We believe that the best way to improve our service is by learning from the people who use it. We welcome comments, compliments and complaints from clients, referral agencies, volunteers and anyone else we come into contact within our work. These help us to see what we are doing well and where we can make improvements.

We aim to promote an environment where people are encouraged to raise and discuss issues informally and, where necessary, seek solutions to prevent them developing into problems or complaints.

However, we recognise that there may be situations where people are not happy with the outcome of an informal discussion or feel that the issue needs to be taken further. In these cases, Norwich foodbank has a complaints procedure so that we can work towards a resolution in a fair and transparent manner.


Our promise and commitment

We recognise that there may be times when our services and activities do not meet your expectations.  If this happens, it is important that we know about it as soon as possible so that we can deal with the situation effectively to try to prevent it from happening again and to learn from our mistakes.  We promise to take all feedback and complaints seriously and to deal with them in a timely manner.


How to register a complaint or give feedback:

If you have a complaint, or would like to share a concern, compliment or comment on any aspect of our service, you can contact us in one of the following ways:

  1. In person to the Project Manager, Warehouse Manager, Office Administrator Project Officer or Distribution Centre Leader at the foodbank
  2. By phone: 01603 251733
  1. Write to the following address: Norwich Foodbank, Henderson Business Centre, 51 Ivy Road, Norwich, NR5 8BF

Please tell us what your complaint or feedback is about (including names, nature of the complaint, dates and times, any witnesses and any action already taken) and what you would like to see happen as a result. Please also tell us how we may contact you.


What will happen after I complain?

We will acknowledge your complaint within five working days of receipt and we will tell you who will be dealing with the matter and when you can expect a full response.

On receipt of a formal complaint, we will take action to separate you from the alleged discriminator / harasser to enable an uninterrupted investigation to take place.  This may involve a temporary transfer of the alleged harasser to another area until the matter has been resolved.

Wherever possible, Norwich foodbank will respect your confidentiality and keep your complaint confidential as far as possible.  Any information about the complaint will usually only be shared with those who need to know in order to help resolve it.

There may, however, be occasions when we cannot provide absolute confidentiality, for example in circumstances where a child or vulnerable adult may be at risk of harm. Please refer to our Safeguarding Policy on how we will refer to the appropriate agency.

When the investigation has been concluded, a draft report of the findings and of the investigator’s recommended course of action will be sent, in writing, to you and to the alleged discriminator / harasser. If you or the alleged discriminator / harasser are dissatisfied with the draft report this should be raised with the investigator within five working days of receiving the draft. Any points of concern will be considered.


If you are not happy with the response you receive, you can escalate your concerns to the Chair of Trustees who will also investigate the matter and advise you on the next steps to resolving your complaint.


The investigator will decide whether or not the issue should be handled via our disciplinary procedures if an employee is involved.



General Notes

If the report concludes that the allegation is well founded, the discriminator / harasser will (if an employee) be subject to disciplinary action in accordance with our disciplinary procedures. Should the discriminator / harasser be a volunteer, similarly fair procedures will be adopted before any decision about continuation of their engagement, or any other measure such as a reprimand, is taken.


If you bring a complaint of harassment, you will not be victimised for having brought the complaint. However, if the report concludes that the complaint is untrue and has been brought with malicious intent we will, subject to a fair procedure as above, no longer accept any further voluntary assistance from you.



Data Privacy Statement

We collate and analyse data about complaints so that we can improve the services we provide. We will collect personal information including your name and contact details, postal address, telephone number, email address and social media contact information, in order to be able to investigate your complaint and to communicate with you about it. We will also collect sufficient information about the situation that you are contacting us about to be able to understand what has happened. We may need to request further information depending on the nature of your complaint. We have a legitimate interest in holding this information in order to be able to monitor and improve our services.

Information gathered is accessed by Norwich Foodbank staff and Trustees and may be shared with advice agencies or professional services firms only if appropriate, for example if your complaint relates to safeguarding and we need to seek guidance as to next steps. We may need to share this information with the Trussell Trust in order to understand what has happened and determine a resolution.

We keep this information for 2 years after your complaint has been closed, unless we have a requirement to keep it longer, in which case we will inform you of this. After this time the data will be aggregated and anonymised.