Complaints

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Complaints

SAHSSI is committed to providing an efficient and effective complaints handling service to clients, their advocates, service providers and the community.  We value complaints from those who deal with us because it helps us to improve our services by revealing areas where we need to change our policies and practices.

SAHSSI is committed to ensuring that any complaints we receive are handled in a way that is responsive, fair and courteous and that respects the privacy of the person making the complaint.  We also undertake to make sure that we provide reasons for any decisions we make in relation to complaints we receive.

What Complaints are Covered Under Our Policy?

Our policy applies to complaints that relate to SAHSSI and its services.  They include, for example, complaints about;

  • The manner in which a service has been provided
  • Disagreement with decisions made by SAHSSI
  • A failure to provide a service, or lack of responsive to a request for service
  • The actions of our staff –unfair or poor treatment of a person
  • Difficulties with getting access to our services, such as physical access to an office, or a failure to provide assistance with communication difficulties;
  • Complaints relating to services that we provide;
  • Conflict of interest between a staff members official duties and their private interests;
  • Complaints relating to any one of our refuges, any of its services, its staff or any representative of the refuge (including management).

Clients that are approved and reside in crisis or transitional housing accommodation are also able to appeal tenancy decisions made such as:

  • Allocation or eligibility for Transitional Housing
  • Eviction from Crisis or Transitional Accommodation
  • Declined Services
  • Rental subsidy assessments
  • Cancellation of rental subsidy
  • Calculation of water charges

More information on what is appealable, not appealable and how to lodge an appeal.

How Do I Make a Complaint?

Step 1:

Wherever possible, complaints are best resolved informally by the people involved. You, or your advocate should talk or write to the person responsible for the decision or conduct about which you are complaining. SAHSSI has a Client Complaint Form which includes an easy to follow Fact Sheet to help you understand the processes for lodging a complaint.

Note: Staff members of SAHSSI can support clients to make a complaint, if asked, by:

  • Providing accurate information about the process; and or
  • Helping clients to make a complaint by writing the complaint out for them or making the complaint on their behalf.

SAHSSI is committed to handling complaints in a way that respects people’s privacy and the confidentiality of the matter.  The only people who will have access to information about your complaint are those who are working on resolving it.

If you have any concerns about your confidentiality of your complaint, you can tell the person who is handling it.

To lodge a complaint in another language, please call the Translating and Interpreting Service (TIS) on 131 450.

If you are deaf, or have a hearing or speech impairment, contact us through the National Relay Service. For more information, visit: www.relayservice.gov.au

Step 2:

If you are not satisfied with the response, you, or your advocate should try to discuss the matter again with the Manager. If you are still not satisfied, or if you are unsure of who is the appropriate person to contact about your complaint, you can call or write to the CEO.

The CEO will listen to your complaint and may very well be able to resolve the issue promptly on the phone. She will let you know what she will be doing with your complaint and the timeframes for getting back to you.

  • Phone: Call (02) 4229 8523 to talk directly to a staff member. You can contact the office between 9.00 am and 4.30 pm, Monday to Friday.
  • Fax: Print and complete the Client Complaint Form and fax it to (02) 4226 3958
  • Email: complaints@sahssi.org.au
  • Mail: Print and complete the Client Complaint Form and post it to either recipient:
    SAHSSI CEO
    PO Box 1178
    Wollongong DC, 2500 NSW
    OR
    Private and Confidential
    Attention: Chairperson
    SAHSSI Management Committee
    PO Box 1178
    Wollongong DC, 2500 NSW
  • Online: Complete the form below.
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Step 3:

We will do the best we can to resolve your complaint.  If you are still not happy with the process or result of your complaint, you have the right to take your complaint to another body for external review.   You will need to ask these bodies whether they can deal with your matter and if not, which agency can help.

Bodies who may undertake a review of your complaint include:

  1. NSW Ombudsman:
    Web: http://www.ombo.nsw.gov.au/
  2. Registrar of Community Housing:
    Web: http://www.rch.nsw.gov.au/
  3. Family and Community Services:
    Web: http://www.facs.nsw.gov.au/
  4. Privacy NSW:
    Web: http://www.ipc.nsw.gov.au/
  5. Anti-Discrimination Board of NSW:
    Web: http://www.antidiscrimination.justice.nsw.gov.au/

The Registrar’s office only investigates complaints about community housing providers that are registered under the Housing Act 2001 (NSW) or the National Regulatory System for Community Housing (NRSCH).  SAHSSI is registered under the NRSCH by section 10(1) of the Community Housing Providers National law (NSW).

What is Expected of You?

When you make a complaint you are responsible for :

  • Giving us a clear idea of the problem and the solution you want.
  • Giving us all the relevant information that you have at the beginning.
  • Letting us know whether anyone else is currently dealing with your complaint.
  • Telling us new facts or letting us know if you no longer wish to complain.
  • Cooperating with us.
  • Treating our staff with respect.

What is SAHSSI Responsible For?

We are responsible for:

  • Handling your complaint professionally, efficiently and fairly.
  • Keeping you informed of our progress.
  • Giving you reasons for our decisions.
  • Treating you with courtesy and respect.
  • Giving reasonable assistance to make your complaint, for instance providing access to an interpreter services.

Are you Homeless?

If you are homeless and need assistance, call this number now:

1800 152 152

(Link2home)

Are you Experiencing Domestic Violence?

If you are experiencing Domestic Violence and need assistance, call this number now:

1800 656 463

(Domestic Violence Hotline)

SAHSSI Service Referrals

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Donations

SAHSSI accepts donations for food, essential living items and cash. Please help if you can.