Complaints Policy

LiveDifferent is committed to promptly acknowledging and investigating complaints and to resolving them in an ethical manner consistent with LiveDifferent’s values.

This policy and procedure applies to complaints received about LiveDifferent’s activities, programs, services, staff or volunteers.

A. Guiding Principles

– Complaints will be managed by the COO, unless there is a conflict of interest.
– Complaints will be handled promptly and resolved in a fair, impartial and respectful manner.
– Complainants will be advised of the option to escalate their complaint if the process was perceived by the Complainant to be unfair or that the decision wasn’t based on evidence.
– Complainants will be provided clear and detailed reasons for decisions relating to their complaints.
– Written updates will be provided to Complainants during the review process.
– Complaints will be used to assist in improving services, policies and procedures.

B. Types of Complaints

Definition: A complaint is an expression of dissatisfaction about the service, actions, or lack of action by LiveDifferent as an organization or committed by a staff member or volunteer acting in their role as a LiveDifferent staff member or volunteer.

Examples include but are not limited to:
– perceived failure to do something which had been previously agreed upon;
– failure to observe policy or procedures;
– failure to abide by the Canadian Human Rights Code;
– error made by a staff member/volunteer; or
– unfair or discourteous actions or statements by staff member/volunteer.

Anyone who was personally impacted or who has first-hand knowledge of the incident can file a complaint and that complaint will be reviewed in accordance with this policy.

C. Complaint Receipt and Handling

A complaint may be received verbally (by phone or in person) or in writing (by mail, fax, email). An employee or volunteer who receives a complaint will immediately refer the Complainant to the COO. It is the responsibility of the COO to resolve the complaint. If the complaint cannot be resolved, it will be escalated to the CEO. If the complaint is about the CEO, it shall be handled by the Chair of the Board.

The COO will acknowledge to the Complainant that the complaint has been received. The Complainant will be advised of the process and estimated timeline required to review and resolve the complaint, subject to outstanding circumstances. A written decision with reasons will be provided to the Complainant, upon resolution.

Every effort will be made to resolve the complaint within ten business days.

D. Documenting the Complaint

It is necessary to keep a record of all complaints including a description of the complaint, who handled it, what was done to resolve the complaint, timeframe, and a description of the resolution.

A summary of the complaints received, including number, type, outcome and dates received and resolved will be reported to the CEO monthly and to LiveDifferent’s Board of Directors annually, at the meeting following the Annual General Meeting.

The CEO shall promptly report to the Board of Directors any complaint that may have a material consequence for the organization.

The Complainant should give enough information to enable a full investigation, including where and when the Reportable Activity occurred, names and titles of individuals involved, and as much other relevant detail as the Complainant can provide.