Community Living & Respite Services Inc. (CLRS) recognises that clients, families, and stakeholders have the right to raise and have resolved any complaint they have about CLRS services.

Clients, families, stakeholders and staff are provided with information on how to make a complaint and the complaints management process. Complainants will not be adversely affected because a compliant has been lodged by them or on their behalf.

CLRS will handle all complaints in a manner consistent with privacy and confidentiality standards, and endeavour to seek resolution within a reasonable time.

A complaint can be:

  • Communicated verbally,  in writing or online through the CLRS Website
  • Related to a specific occurrence or failure in the provision of a service that has resulted in an impact on the person or group
  • A registered expression of dissatisfaction with any service provided that is lodged by the complainant or their representative

A general expression of concern, comment, or suggestion about a matter is not considered a complaint.

Information on How to Make a Complaint

Information on the complaints process at CLRS is  provided at service entry, on the CLRS website, at annual review, staff induction and in the CLRS Newsletters and Staff bulletins.

How to Make a Complaint

If clients, families, carers, or stakeholders have a problem or concern about CLRS supports, staff or services they should:

  • Contact the relevant Team Leader to discuss ways to address and resolve their concerns
  • Contact the CLRS Service Development Manager or CEO, either in person or by completing a Have Your Say Form or if preferred  by a written letter.  Complete a Have Your Say Form or  Easy English version, copies can be found in service users welcome pack, at all  CLRS sites, or can be completed online at the CLRS website 
  • Alternately or if the issue is unable to be resolved with CLRS, contact can be made with the Disability Commissioner for Victoria or the NSW Ombudsman. Contact details are provided at the end of this policy.
  • Community Visitors attend Residential services as per Residential Services Policy.

Complaints Management Process

The complainant has the right to have an advocate present at any stage during the resolution process. CLRS will facilitate the client’s use of external agencies for support or advice.  


The lodgement of a complaint does not lead to a reduction or withdrawal of a service or any form of repercussions, reprisal or victimisation. 


The Service Development  Manager or CEO will:

Contact the complainant within three working days with the aim of resolving the issue within two weeks.

Investigate the complaint and ensure the complainant is kept informed of the progress of the investigation.

Follow up with the complainant to ensure outcomes and interventions are effective in resolving the complaint.

Should no agreement be reached, the Board will be advised, and if appropriate, a meeting may be arranged with a oard representative.

If there is still no resolution the relevant funding body such as Department of Health and Human Services or Ageing Disability and Home Care NSW, will be advised for assistance in the resolution process.

Should either the complainant or CLRS be dissatisfied with the outcome, an appeal may be lodged with VCAT who can accept, modify or change the decision.

Where a concern is raised involving a child in Out of Home Care about possible physical or sexual abuse, neglect or poor quality of care concerns, CLRS is required to contact the DHHS Quality of Care Coordinator within 24 hours of receiving the reported concern to determine the most appropriate response.

Information in relation to complaints is kept confidential. Copies of the complaint will be stored securely to ensure privacy and confidentiality of the complainant.


A report on the number and type of complaints is provided to the Disability Services Commissioner annually. A copy of the DHHS confirmation email is kept as evidence of the report.

Complaints are reported and discussed at the Senior Management meetings and a summary provided to Board meetings.

 An annual audit of complaints is tabled at the Quality Sub Committee as part of the annual compliance schedule.

Disability Services Commissioner


New South Wales Ombudsman

(New South Wales)

Level 30

570 Bourke Street

Melbourne VIC 3000

Level 24, 580 George Street

Sydney NSW 2000

Tel: 02 9286 1000

Toll Free 1800 677 342

Toll Free 1800 451 524

Tel. Typewriter (TTY) 1300 726 563

Tel. Typewriter (TTY) 13 36 77 then ask for 02 9286 1000

Tel. Interpreter Service 131 450

Tel. Interpreter Service 131 450

Fax: 03 8608 5765

Fax: 02 9283 2911





Australian Government – Department of Social Services:

Tel: 1300 653 227

Complaints: 1800 634 035



Commonwealth Ombudsman:

Tel: 1300 362 072

Victorian Ombudsman:

Tel.  1800 806 314


Department of Education & Early Childhood Development

PO Box 442

Bendigo  Vic  3552

Tel. 03 54403111

Fax: 03544425321

Department of Human Services

74 -78 Queens St

Bendigo  Vic  3550

Tel 03 5434 5555

Fax: 03 5434 5670

The Commission for Children and Young People

Tel. 1300 782 978

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