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Complaints Procedure

1. Composition of Complaints Committee

1.1      The President for the time being or such person as he/she shall nominate in writing shall be the Convenor of the Complaints Committee.

1.2     The Complaints Committee shall comprise:

(a) The President or his/her nominee,
(b) The Coordinator of the DWEA, and
(c) One other member of the Committee.


1.3     Should a complaint involve a DWEA Committee member or the Coordinator, then they shall not sit on the Complaints Committee in respect of that complaint.


2.     Complaints Address to the President

2.1     All complaints in respect of which the Complaints Committee has jurisdiction shall, in the first instance, be addressed to the President or his or her nominee.

2.2     The President or his or her nominee shall upon receiving a complaint:

(a)     Decide the other members of the Complaints Committee that will determine the specific complaint, and
(b)     Provide a copy of the complaint to the members of the Committee that will be hearing the complaint, and
(c)     Provide a copy of the complaint to the person or persons the subject of the complaint seeking a written response to the complaint within 14 days and providing a brief outline as to the procedure to be adopted by the Complaints Committee, and
(d)     Write a letter of acknowledgment to the complainant advising the complainant:

i.     that a response has been sought from the persons the subject of the complaint, and

ii.     outlining the procedure to be adopted for the determination of the complaint.


3.     Procedure to be Adopted on Receipt of Response from Person Complained Against

3.1     If the person complained about has not responded in writing to the Committee at the expiration of 14 days then the Complaints Committee may proceed to determine the complaint without further input from the person complained about provided however that should the Complaints Committee decide to conduct a hearing in respect to the complaint it shall give notice of the date of the hearing to the person complained about.

3.2     At the expiration of 14 days or upon receipt of a response from the person complained about, whichever first occurs, the Complaints Committee shall meet to determine what action should be taken in respect to the complaint.


4.     Options Available to Committee

4.1     The options available to the Committee are as follows:

(a) Determine the complaint on the basis of the written complaint and written response (if there has been one).
(b) Determine the complaint in the absence of a response from the person complained about.
(c) Determine that before making a formal decision on the complaint the Committee would like to hear from both the complainant and the person complained about.


5.     Procedure to be Adopted in the Event that the Committee Decides to Hear Further from the Complainant and Person Complained About

5.1     The President on behalf of the Committee shall determine a date for the hearing of the complaint.

5.2     The complainant and the person or persons complained about shall be advised of the date of hearing and requested to attend the hearing with any witnesses and if required a support person.

5.3     The procedure to be adopted at the hearing shall be determined by the Complaints Committee.


6.     Procedure Following Complaints Committee Hearing

6.1     After hearing from the complainant and any witnesses and the person complained about and any witnesses the Complaints Committee shall determine whether or not the complaint has been sustained.

6.2     In the event that the Complaints Committee is satisfied that the complaint has been sustained, it will determine what steps shall be taken to address the concerns underlying the complaint.

6.3     The Complaints Committee shall provide its written determination to both the complainant and the person complained about.