Complaints policy and procedure

SafeLives is committed to providing the highest possible quality of service and support to all of our clients, partners and supporters. However, sometimes things do go wrong, and we can use the constructive criticism we receive to improve the ways we work. If you have any criticisms, concerns or complaints about SafeLives’ services - or if you would simply like to suggest a way in which our services could be improved - please let us know so that we can make any necessary changes and prevent mistakes happening in the future.

Please note this policy relates to complaints about SafeLives’ services or personnel. If you have a concern about, for example, an Idva service or Marac, please note that SafeLives is unlikely to have jurisdiction but we may be able to help identify how you can take your concerns forward. If you do have any concerns about Marac, find out who to contact. If you have any concerns about a service which we accredit through our Leading Lights process, please see our Leading Lights Complaints Policy


How to complain

For most complaints or concerns you will know the relevant SafeLives team and if something goes wrong, your first course of action should be to raise the problem informally with the team or person concerned. They will often be able to put things right very quickly and simply.

If this isn’t appropriate then you can also contact the following people to discuss the matter further. 

Chief Executive
Suzanne Jacob

Director of Quality and Innovation
Jo Silver

Director of External Relations
Liz Thompson

Chief Operating Officer
Jo Gordon

Head of Training
Emma Robinson


If you do not feel comfortable doing this, you can make a more formal complaint, by taking the simple steps outlined below.

The central complaints process is administered through the Chief Executive, who is ultimately responsible for all complaints received at SafeLives.


Email feedback@safelives.org.uk. The information you provide will be sent directly through to the Chief Executive.

Alternatively you can send your complaint by post to:

CEO’s office
Suite 2a, Whitefriars
Lewins Mead

What to include in your complaint

You should state clearly and briefly:

  • What went wrong
  • When and where it happened
  • Who was involved
  • What you want from your complaint
  • Your name, address and contact details (telephone and/or email).


What happens when you complain

When a complaint is received by the Chief Executive it is first logged, and acknowledged by the Chief Executive. Depending on the nature of your complaint, the Chief Executive may choose to respond personally, or they may refer the complaint on to another senior director or appropriate manager who will review the complaint and respond.

It may be necessary for staff to contact you for further information as we look into the matter, so please do remember to include full contact details with your complaint.

All complaints will be treated with an appropriate degree of confidentiality, and information will only be shared with staff as necessary.

The vision and values that govern all of our work also apply to the manner in which we handle complaints. Consequently you have the right to expect:

  • your complaint to be handled promptly and efficiently
  • the process to be transparent
  • to be treated with respect at all times.


Timeframes for response

We will acknowledge and provide initial response to your feedback within 10 working days of receiving it.

Whilst we expect to be able to resolve most complaints within that time frame, if we need to conduct a more in-depth review, we will aim to provide you with a full response within 20 working days.

If we are unable to meet that deadline due to exceptional circumstances, we will of course let you know.


If you are dissatisfied after your complaint has been reviewed by the CEO, you can appeal to the SafeLives Board of Trustees, via the Chair, within one calendar month of the decision. After consideration of an appeal the decision of the Board of Trustees will be final; there will not be any further recourse to appeal within SafeLives. If you want to take your complaint further, depending on its nature, you can contact the Charity Commission which is the official regulator for all Registered Charities in England and Wales, or the Fundraising Regulator

SafeLives will maintain a confidential record of all complaints and the outcomes of any reviews and appeals, in line with our existing Data Protection policy. There will be reviewed annually and fed into development and training.