Egham Constellations (referred to as the “Club”) aims to provide its members, associated organisations and individuals with the best possible support and assistance in connection with the Assisted Swim sessions at Egham Orbit pools.
Usually, a word with the person concerned at the time will suffice should a problem arise. However, we recognise that from time to time there may be occasions when someone’s experience falls short of what they could reasonably expect. We also want to know about these occasions so that we can learn from the situation and plan to avoid its repetition.
This is the policy that we will follow if your complaint is about someone’s conduct or behaviour. This could be because you think that someone has behaved in a way that is unsafe, unprofessional, discriminatory, offensive or intimidating. It could be because someone has broken important rules or policies.
Values and principles
You have the right to complain: we take complaints seriously. You should not be harassed, bullied or put at a disadvantage because of making a complaint.
Equality: you should receive a proper response to your complaint, regardless of your age, gender, disability, race, religion, nationality, social status, sexual orientation or political persuasion.
Fairness: we believe that complaints should be dealt with fairly and openly. Unless it would put other people at risk, those affected by a complaint should have a chance to contribute and respond to any investigation.
Safety and welfare take priority: we will always give priority to concerns that affect safety and welfare. Issues affecting children will be treated very seriously in accordance with Egham Orbit’s (run by Achieve Lifestyle) Child Protection Policy
Confidentiality: we treat complaints as confidentially as possible.
Sometimes we have to discuss complaints with other organisations. If we are worried about a risk to a person or to the public, we might need to pass on our concerns to the right authorities. If necessary, we will get advice from other organisations such as the Police, Social Services or Egham Orbit/Achieve Lifestyle.
How to make a complaint?
If you have a complaint, it is often best to start by having a conversation with one of the members of the Club Committee. They may be able to help to resolve your problem. You could also make a written complaint addressed to The Secretary.
If the issue is serious, or you are not satisfied after raising it with the Committee member as indicated above, you should make a formal complaint and put this in writing. We accept anonymous complaints, but it is often very difficult to investigate these properly. It is easier for us to handle your complaint if you provide as much detail as possible.
Your complaint should be made in writing/email, marked “Private & Confidential", and sent to the Club Secretary who will acknowledge it in writing/email (normally within 14 days of receipt).
What will we do to investigate?
We will investigate your complaint fairly and within a reasonable period of time. We will aim to meet within 28 days of receipt of a complaint being lodged to discuss the matter. Any written complaint will be investigated jointly by the Complaints Committee which consists of the Chairman, Secretary and at least one additional Committee member. We will discuss the complaint with all of the relevant people and try to gather any information that may be relevant to handling your complaint.
Sometimes we will ask to show copies of information from the investigation to other people to allow them to respond. This is because we believe in fairness and openness. We will not share information if we think that this will endanger someone’s safety or welfare.
How will I know what is happening?
You will be able to contact the Secretary who will make sure that you understand the process, and will help to answer any questions or concerns that you have. You will be given an update on the progress of your complaint every two weeks and it is hoped that any complaint will be dealt with within 28 days of receipt. If there are delays in handling your complaint for any reason, we will keep you informed. If your complaint leads to formal disciplinary action against someone, we will usually inform you about the outcome. We will not tell you the outcome if that person is a child, or if we believe that telling you would create a risk to other people. In this situation, we will still try to tell you about how you are affected by the action that we have taken.
What are the possible outcomes or results of my complaint?
In many cases, we are able to resolve problems informally. This might include:
- A change in arrangements for particular activities
- An explanation or apology
- An agreement to communicate or act differently in future
- If an informal resolution is not suitable, then the Complaints Committee will look at the information about the case. We will try to make sure that if your complaint relates to one of the members of the Complaints Committee that we will replace that member with another member from the Club Committee. After considering your complaint the Complaints Committee may decide to take the following action:
- Formal disciplinary action against a member
- Formal disciplinary action against a volunteer
- Changes in policy arrangements
- A decision to refer the case to another organisation such as the Police, Social Services or Egham Orbit/Achieve Lifestyle
- Closure of your complaint without action
- You have the right - if dissatisfied with the results of the inquiry, to appeal and to put your request that the matter be referred to the Club Committee in their entirety. You will be entitled to make oral representations at the Club Committee meeting if you choose to do so.
- The decision of the Club Committee will be final and this will be reported to you in writing.