Public Sector: Complaints

Cabinet Office written question – answered on 11th June 2014.

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Photo of Robert Buckland Robert Buckland Conservative, South Swindon

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office

(1) what recent assessment he has made of the ease of use for the public of the complaints systems across public services; and if he will make a statement;

(2) what assessment he has made of levels of public confidence in complaints systems across public services;

(3) how many complaints were received by each ombudsman service in England in each of the last five years;

(4) if he will assess the potential merits of introducing an automatic trigger for inspections of individual public services when a certain number of people using that service have made complaints about it;

(5) if he will assess the potential merits of allowing designated bodies to be given the power to make super-complaints against public service providers such as those that exist in private markets;

(6) what assessment he has made of the benefits of future mergers of public service ombudsman services in England.

Photo of Francis Maude Francis Maude The Paymaster General and Minister for the Cabinet Office

The Government are considering recent reports of the Public Administration Select Committee (PASC) into how complaints about public services are handled. As part of this, the Cabinet Office is working to investigate further how public services can make best use of complaints and also to take a wider look at the role and powers of the Public Sector Ombudsmen. The Government will respond to the PASC in due course. I am happy to discuss this matter further with my hon. Friend.

The annual reports and accounts of the public service ombudsmen in the UK provide details of their performance over the past 12 months including information about complaints received.

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