Suggestions, feedback and complaints

Your views are important to us and we value feedback on our services and welcome suggestions about how we can improve them. We will act on customer feedback, whenever practicable, to help us improve our services or efficiency and focus on the needs of our customers.

If you are satisfied with a service we have provided, or with a particular member of staff or team let us know. We will make sure your compliments are passed on to the right person.

How do I give compliments, suggestions or feedback?

Making a complaint

We strive to provide the best possible service but things can go wrong. When mistakes happen or you think our performance is not satisfactory we want to know so that we can put things right and prevent it from happening again.

What do we mean by a complaint?

A complaint is when you want to tell us that you are not satisfied with our standard of service or with any action or lack of action by us. You should make a complaint when:

How do I make a complaint?

Step 1 - Contact us

If you have a problem get in touch with one of the Service Managers at the port health office who can help.  In most cases in order to assist you the Service Manager will need to review the case file before they can discuss your complaint.  In order to provide you with a full response it is helpful if you email the port health office providing consignment details including a container number and brief details of your complaint so that one of the Service Managers can get back to you.  Most problems can be resolved on the spot but for those that may take a little longer we will make sure you are kept fully informed.

Step 2 - A formal complaint

We hope we can resolve your complaint by the first step.

If you are dissatisfied with our response you should contact us and we will arrange for the relevant Head of Service to investigate your complaint. You should explain your complaint and outline the steps taken so far to obtain satisfaction.

You can use our online complaints form.  To find out more about the complaints process visit the East Suffolk website.

We will contact you within five working days and investigate immediately. The head of service will normally reply to you fully within 20 working days. It may take a bit longer if the matter is complex or we need to contact other organisations. We will keep you informed of what action is being taken.

If you would like independent advice to make a formal complaint, you can get help from your local Citizens Advice Bureau.
You also have the right to complain to your local councillor if you are based in the district. If you do not know who he or she is, contact the Customer Services Team on 01394 383789.

If you complain to your local councillor, he or she may contact the officer concerned on your behalf. You will then receive a reply from the Head of Service, telling you what action will be taken. Your local councillor will get a copy of the same letter.

Step 3 - Taking your complaint further

If having taken steps 1 and 2 you are still not satisfied, you can ask for your complaint to be dealt with by the Council's Chief Executive who will carry out an independent investigation and tell you the outcome within 28 working days.

Step 4 - The Local Government Ombudsman

You may also take your complaint to the Local Government Ombudsman, who works independently of the Council. However the Ombudsman will usually expect you to try to get your complaint settled by the Council first. Any complaint to the Ombudsman must involve more than a disagreement with the Council and needs to show that something went wrong and an injustice was caused. Follow this link for more information on how to complain to the Local Government Ombudsman (new window).

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