Complaints against Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner Staff
1. Purpose of the procedure
1.1 The Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner for Northamptonshire (the
Commissioner) seeks to provide a high standard of service to the public for all
matters which are within the roles, functions and responsibilities of the
Commissioner. This Complaints Procedure has the following purposes:
(a) to reassure the public that any reasonable complaint made about the
performance or conduct of a member of staff of the Commissioner will be
impartially and thoroughly investigated within an appropriate timescale;
(b) to ensure that Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner staff members who are
subject to a complaint have adequate rights and safeguards during the
course of investigation of the complaint and any subsequent disciplinary
procedures (if appropriate); and
(c) to ensure that any investigation and conclusions comply with the
requirements of natural justice, rules of evidence, human rights and equal
2. Complaints to which this procedure relates
2.1 The Commissioner will investigate a complaint in accordance with this
procedure if it concerns one of the following:
(i) if you are not satisfied about the level of service provided by a member
of the Commissioners staff.
(ii) if you believe there has been a breach of the Commissioners staff
Code of Conduct by a member of the Commissioners staff.
2.2 If your complaint relates to a response you have received to a request you
have made for access to information, the Commissioner will consider your
complaint in accordance with the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act
2.3 The following types of complaint are excluded from the procedure:
(i) Complaints which amount to a disagreement with a decision of the
(ii) matters which are currently the subject of litigation or legal
(iii) any dispute by staff members concerning their terms and conditions of
3. Making a complaint
3.1 Complaints must be addressed to:
The Monitoring Officer
Northamptonshire Office of the Police & Crime Commissioner
Or, if the complaint is about the Monitoring Officer, then to the Police, Fire and Crime
Commissioner at the same address.
3.2 Complaints should be made in writing, if at all possible, in order to aid clarity
and avoid misunderstanding. However, if this causes you difficulty (due for
example to a disability, difficulty reading and writing or due to a language
barrier) then the complaint may be accepted in another format – each case
will be considered individually.
3.3 Regardless of how the complaint is made you will be provided with written
acknowledgement of the complaint within 5 working days of receipt by the
4. How the complaint will be investigated
It should be noted that the Commissioner will not necessarily personally investigate
your complaint but may delegate the responsibility to another member of staff who
has not had any involvement in the matter about which the complaint is being made.
You will be advised about who is your point of contact and will be provided with
written confirmation of the complaint to ensure the complaint has been properly
understood. If it is unclear what your complaint is about then you may be asked to
clarify it or provide additional information.
Step 1 – Initial Discussion
4.1 All complaints will be considered initially by the Monitoring Officer. As
complaints can often be resolved quickly through informal discussions, the
Monitoring Officer, or an officer appointed by him/her (but not an officer/officers
who is/are the subject of the complaint(s)) may contact you to discuss your
complaint with you.
This is often a good way of resolving a complaint and if, as a result of any
discussions, you are satisfied with the outcome, that will usually resolve the
Step 2 – Further Investigation
4.2 If informal discussion has not, in the particular circumstances, been
appropriate or has failed to resolve your complaint or if more detailed
investigation of the complaint is necessary, then further investigation will be
undertaken. You will be advised of this and of how long it might take.
4.3 The Commissioner would normally expect to complete any investigations and
to provide a full response in writing within 20 working days of your complaint
being acknowledged. However, where this timescale is not practicable, you
will be contacted in writing advising why and when the Commissioner
anticipates being able to provide you with a full response. If the complaint
takes longer to resolve then you will be updated on progress at least every 28
Step 3 – If you are not satisfied with the outcome
4.4 In the event that you consider that your complaint has not been dealt with to
your satisfaction you may ask for a review by the Monitoring Officer or by the
Commissioner if the complaint is about the Chief Executive.
Step 4 – if you still remain dissatisfied
4.5 If, following a full response from the Monitoring Officer, you remain dissatisfied,
you may write directly to the Commissioner who will consider your complaint.
Their decision will be final.
4.6 Depending on the nature and substance of your complaint there may be other
avenues through which you can raise your complaint. You may for example
be able to make your complaint to one or more external regulatory bodies and
details of those which may be relevant will be provided at the time that the
Commissioner’s decision about your complaint is notified to you.
5. Complaints about the Chief Executive
5.1 Complaints about the Chief Executive will be dealt with by the Commissioner.
5.2 If the complaint raises any questions of discipline or conduct in connection
with the Chief Executive, the Commissioner will consider the actions available
to them in the relevant circumstances and will notify you as and when
decisions are taken.
6. Making Contact
Any complaints about members of staff should be addressed to:
Northamptonshire Office of the Police, Fire & Crime Commissioner,