Tell us your views about children's services

We would like to hear your views on our children's social care services.

You may want to: 

  • say thank you to someone who has helped you 
  • tell us how you think we could do things better 
  • make a complaint 

We welcome your views as they help us improve our services where we can. 

If you have a complaint, you should first speak to the member of staff that you know best. Most complaints get sorted this way. If not, you can speak to someone from Social Care Customer Services at the civic centre. 

Social Care Customer Services investigate all complaints but aren't involved in the day-to-day running of children's services. We make sure that staff do not investigate complaints about themselves. 

Stage 1 - resolution

You can make your complaint: 

  • over the telephone 
  • in writing 
  • in person, to the member of staff you know best 
  • by email 

We would ask you to tell us why you are unhappy and what you would like us to do to put it right. We will acknowledge your complaint within three working days. The person looking into it will talk to you about your complaint and how we can try to put things right. You should receive a letter explaining what was found within 10 working days. We will keep you informed of any delays. Most complaints get sorted at this stage. If you are a child or young person, we can provide an advocate (a spokesperson) to help you.

Stage 2 - investigate

At the end of Stage 1, if you are not happy with the outcome, you can ask for your complaint to be investigated further. An investigating officer and an external independent person will then be asked to look into your complaint. Once we are sure of what you want us to look into, the investigation will then start. 
You should receive a letter within 25 working days telling you:

  • what we found 
  • what children's services has decided to do about it 
  • why the decisions were reached 

This may take longer than 25 days for complicated complaints. The Investigating Officer will let you know about any delays. 

Stage 3 - an Independent Complaint Review Panel

If you remain unhappy and wish for your complaint to be considered by a review panel, please let us know within 20 working days of receipt of your Stage 2 outcome letter. 

Other ways to complain: 

  • your local councillor
  • your MP 
  • a solicitor
  • Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman 

PO Box 4771
Coventry
CV4 0EH 
0300 061 0614 
Text 'Call Back' on 0762 481 1595 
www.lgo.org.uk  on-line complaints form 

Ofsted 
Piccadilly Gate
Store Street
Manchester
M1 2WD 
0300 123 1231 
enquiries@ofsted.gov.uk 
www.ofsted.gov.uk 

Icon for pdf Children and Families procedure [171.96KB]

Contact us

Social Care Customer Services
Care, Wellbeing and Learning
Civic Centre
Regent Street
Gateshead
NE8 1HH

Include a daytime phone number so we can contact you.

enquiries.cbs@gateshead.gov.uk
0191 433 2692 (9am-5pm)

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