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When I'm at work: Solving complaints - Trainer's guide

Chapters

Appendix

Topic 1

Slide 1

Hello. If you watch and listen to these topics, you will learn all about complaints in the workplace – what a complaint is, who you can talk to about your complaints, what will happen if you make a complaint.

Each topic gives you important information to do with workplace complaints, and then tells a story about it.

You can follow along in your workbook. There are some activities for you to do in your workbook if you want to. Your trainer will discuss them with you before you start.

Slide 2

Welcome to Topic 1. Let's have a look at some information about workplace complaints.

Slide 3

In this topic, we will look at these points.

Slide 4

What is a complaint?

A complaint is when you have a problem or worry about your work that you need to tell someone about.

Something or someone could be making you feel unsafe, uncomfortable, or unhappy at work. This might make it hard for you to do your job.

When this happens, you need to do something about it. You need to get help to sort it out.

Slide 5

Different types of complaints

Things that might lead to a complaint at work are:

Slide 6

Is your complaint serious or just a grumble?

We all grumble about things at work now and then, but we may not need to make formal complaints about them all. Talking to a friend or co-worker who you trust can help you decide this.

There is a difference between problems that you need to make a formal complaint about and the 'grumbles' we sometimes have about work.

Here's an example of a workplace grumble

Your workplace gives all its supported employees freshly-baked scones for morning tea every Friday. You might grumble about not getting a morning tea like that every day, but this is not a problem that you should make a formal complaint about.

Here's an example of a serious complaint

You bring money to work every day so that you can buy your lunch. Twice last week, someone took the money from your locker. This is a serious problem and you would make a formal complaint about that.

How can you tell the difference between a grumble and a complaint??

Asking yourself these questions might help.

Slide 7

When should you make a complaint?

You should make a complaint when you have a problem or worry at work that you cannot work out on your own.

When you first start work, part of your induction explains how to make a complaint if you have a problem at work.

The Australian Government has rules called Disability Services Standards that tell your workplace how to do things. Standard 7 is one of these rules. It says that your workplace must help you to get something done about your complaint, if it is related to work. Ask your supervisor for a copy of the Disability Services Standards, or look for them on the Internet.

We will talk more about Disability Services Standard 7 in other topics.

Slide 8

Your trainer will discuss with you the information you have just heard and read about.

Slide 9

Let's now listen to a story about the information you have just heard. Listen and watch carefully.

Here's Igor's story.

Slide 10

This is Igor, a supported employee.

Slide 11

This is his manager, Theresa.

Slide 12

And this is Clive, another supported employee who works with Igor.

Slide 13

Igor goes to Theresa to make a complaint about Clive.

Slide 14

Clive always asks Igor the same questions, 'How are you going, Igor?' and 'Have you seen Brian O'Keefe?'. These questions are OK, but Clive asks them up to 20 times a day, whenever Igor goes anywhere near him. Clive does this with most people.

Slide 15

Clive's behaviour is really starting to annoy Igor. He tries hard to be nice to Clive, but it is not easy sometimes.

Slide 16

For a long time, people have asked Clive to stop asking these questions, but nothing seems to work for long.

Lots of people have complained about Clive's behaviour in the past. The workplace counsellor has talked to Clive about his behaviour, and even that has not helped the problem.

Slide 17

Igor tells Theresa that he is feeling very stressed because of Clive's behaviour. Igor asks Theresa to help him with getting something done about his complaint.

Slide 18

Your trainer will discuss some questions about Igor's story with you.

Slide 19

Now find the activities about Igor's story in your workbook.

Your trainer will help you with the activities.

Topic 2

Slide 20

Welcome to Topic 2. Let's have a look at some information about workplace complaints.

Slide 21

In this topic, we will look at these points.

Slide 22

Complaints can make things better

You have the right to make complaints. Your workplace must try to sort them out quickly for you.

It is important to fix something if it is wrong. That is one way things improve and become better. That is why you need to let someone know about the problems you have.

Slide 23

Disability Services Standards

The Australian Government has rules for Disability Business Services like your workplace. These rules are called the Disability Services Standards.

Standard 7

Standard 7 is about what your workplace must do if you make a complaint. Your workplace has to give you information about how you can make a complaint, and what happens if you do. Your supervisor will talk with you about this information.

Disability Services Standard 7 says that if you make a complaint, your workplace should:

Disability Services Standard 7 also says that your workplace must keep your complaint private. This means that if you make a complaint, your workplace cannot tell anyone else that you are the person who has made it.

Standard 4

Standard 4 also says that your workplace must respect your privacy and confidentiality, and that includes when you make a complaint.

Slide 24

Your right to complain

You have a right to complain and also to know how your workplace must deal with your complaint.

It is your right to know:

Slide 25

Do not be afraid to complain

Remember that:

Slide 26

Your trainer will discuss with you the information you have just heard and read about.

Slide 27

Let's now listen to a story about the information you have just heard. Listen and watch carefully.

Here's Dianne's story.

Slide 28

This is Dianne, a supported employee.

Slide 29

And this is Lenny, the manager of the cafeteria at Dianne's workplace.

Slide 30

At Dianne's workplace, employees order their lunches from the workplace cafeteria. A staff member collects the orders each day and hands them out to the employees at lunchtime.

Slide 31

Dianne orders the same meal each day – sausages, gravy and chips – but by the time she receives it, at least half an hour has passed, and the food has become cold and is not very appetising.

Slide 32

Dianne wants to complain to Lenny about her cold food but she's a bit afraid to because she doesn't want to make a fuss. What if Lenny is angry with her for complaining? What if she loses her job because of it?

Slide 33

After talking to her supervisor about it, Dianne decides to speak with Lenny. He listens carefully to Dianne's complaint, and explains that the problem is the time delay between the food being cooked and Dianne receiving it. He is glad that Dianne spoke with him about this, as he didn't know the food was cold.

Slide 34

Lenny says that, from now on, he will keep the lunches warm until they are collected, so that they will still be hot when Dianne and her co-workers receive them.

Slide 35

Dianne is happy to hear this. The next day, her lunchbox is nice and warm when she receives it, so she knows that the food inside will be nice and warm too.

Slide 36

Your trainer will discuss some questions about Dianne's story with you.

Slide 37

Now find the activities about Dianne's story in your workbook.

Your trainer will help you with the activities.

Topic 3

Slide 38

Welcome to Topic 3. Let's have a look at some information about workplace complaints.

Slide 39

In this topic, we will look at these points.

Slide 40

What happens when you make a formal complaint?

You make a formal complaint about a problem at work if the problem is serious.

Making a formal complaint means that your workplace will do special things to help you sort the problem out.

Making a formal complaint is very serious. You have to tell the whole truth when you make a formal complaint.

Remember that if you have complained about someone else, that person has the right to know what has been said about them but they do not have to know who has said it.

Slide 41

What happens if people do not take your complaint seriously?

If you make a complaint at work, the people you talk to about it must respect what you say. They must not tell anyone else what you say.

If you feel that people do not take your complaint seriously, then you have a right to tell someone else about it.

For example, if you are not happy with the way your supervisor looks after your complaint, then you should tell your manager about your complaint. If your manager does not take your complaint seriously, then you have the right to talk to other people about it.

Your workplace must tell you who to talk to if you think that people do not take your complaint seriously. We will talk more about that later.

Slide 42

Your trainer will discuss with you the information you have just heard and read about.

Slide 43

Let's now listen to a story about the information you have just heard. Listen and watch carefully.

Here's Lisa's story.

Slide 44

This is Lisa, a supported employee.

Slide 45

And this is Sue, Lisa's supervisor.

Slide 46

Here's Dawn, another supported employee and also Lisa's friend.

Slide 47

And Peter, another supported employee.

Slide 48

Lisa approaches Sue to talk to her …

Slide 49

… about what she sometimes sees happening on the bus, on the way home from work.

Slide 50

Lisa's friend Dawn likes to sit by herself in the middle row on the bus, but is often joined by Peter, another supported employee.

Slide 51

Lisa has seen Peter touch Dawn. Lisa is fairly sure that Dawn does not want this happening, but she seems frightened to tell anyone about it.

Slide 52

Sue is not sure that she believes what Lisa is saying. Peter is one of her best workers and has never done anything wrong. Sue decides she'll ask everyone involved to tell her their stories about what's been happening on the bus.

Slide 53

Your trainer will discuss some questions about Lisa's story with you.

Slide 54

Now find the activities about Lisa's story in your workbook.

Your trainer will help you with the activities.

Topic 4

Slide 55

Welcome to Topic 4. Let's have a look at some information about workplace complaints.

Slide 56

In this topic, we will look at these points.

Slide 57

Tips for making a complaint

If you need to complain about something or someone at work, you can start by doing these things.

When you tell someone about the problem, talk about:

If you make a complaint, the decision will not always be in your favour. If you are not happy with the decision made, there are further steps you can take.

Slide 58

Making decisions about complaints

The people who help sort out your complaint will listen to all sides of the story before they decide what to do.

If you are not happy with what they decide, you can ask other people to help you. We will talk more about those people later.

Slide 59

Your trainer will discuss with you the information you have just heard and read about.

Slide 60

Let's now listen to a story about the information you have just heard. Listen and watch carefully.

Here's Melissa's story.

Slide 61

This is Melissa, a supported employee.

Slide 62

This is Charlie, a supported employee who works with Melissa.

Slide 63

And this is Sue, Melissa and Charlie's supervisor.

Slide 64

Melissa brings $10 to work each day to buy morning tea and lunch.

Slide 65

Charlie asks her most days to lend him $4 or $5. This has been going on for months already.

Slide 66

Melissa does not like lending him the money because she does not have enough for herself then, and also because Charlie does not pay the money back to her.

Slide 67

She is scared though, because Charlie has threatened that he will tell all the other workers something about her. Melissa is not sure what he is going to tell, but she is very worried about it.

Slide 68

Melissa feels too afraid to tell anyone about her problem but she doesn't want to keep giving her money to Charlie. She decides that when Charlie is not around, she will talk to Sue, her supervisor.

Melissa trusts Sue and thinks she might be able to help.

Slide 69

Your trainer will discuss some questions about Melissa's story with you.

Slide 70

Now find the activities about Melissa's story in your workbook.

Your trainer will help you with the activities.

Topic 5

Slide 71

Welcome to Topic 5. Let's have a look at some information about workplace complaints.

Slide 72

In this topic, we will look at this point.

Slide 73

Getting help from other people or services

Your workplace will give you information about how you can make a complaint. You can attend training about how to make a complaint properly.

If you are not sure about what you need to do, ask your supervisor or someone else who you trust and are comfortable with.

Slide 74

If you think you are not getting a fair go at work, your complaint has not been handled properly, or there are serious problems at work that you cannot talk to others about, you can get help with this.

People from disability advocacy organisations can help you if you need someone else to talk about your complaint for you, and sort it out quickly. People called 'advocates' can help you and speak for you if you have a workplace complaint that needs to be sorted out.

Your workplace will be able to give you the contact details if you need someone to advocate for you. Speak to your supervisor about this.

The Complaints Resolution and Referral Service (CRRS) is one place you can contact. The people there can help you sort out work problems.

If you do not think that you can do it yourself, you can ask a family member, a friend, or someone else who you trust to contact them for you. Remember, anything that you say to the people at CRRS is confidential. They will not tell anyone else about what you say without your permission.

People at the Australian National Disability Abuse and Neglect Hotline can help you if you are experiencing abuse and neglect. You can call the Hotline to talk about your problems or to find out more about what the Hotline can do to help you.

If you need support to make a complaint, people at the Hotline can find an advocate to help you. The Hotline can also make referrals to other services that can help you with your problems.

The Hotline is open from 8.00am to 8.00pm across Australia, seven days a week.

You can talk to the people at the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission if you want to. They look after your rights as a person. They make sure that your workplace is being fair to you.

You can find contact details for all these people in your workbook.

Slide 75

Your trainer will discuss with you the information you have just heard and read about.

Slide 76

Let's now listen to a story about the information you have just heard. Listen and watch carefully.

Here's Jackie's story.

Slide 77

This is Jackie, a supported employee.

Slide 78

And this is Sandra, a supported employee who works with Jackie.

Slide 79

Jackie works with Sandra.

Sandra's job is to shape dough for biscuits. She is making a lot of mistakes.

She has to take a teaspoon-sized quantity of the prepared dough, shape it in the mould, then flip the dough shape down onto the oven tray. She has to place six biscuits on each tray, with the correct spacing between each pair.

Sandra sometimes forgets to use the mould to shape the dough, and she often places the biscuits incorrectly on the trays.

Slide 80

Jackie thinks that Sandra has some personal problems but she has never said anything to her directly.

Slide 81

Jackie has given Sandra helpful reminders, told her about her mistakes when she sees them happen, and helped her to correct her mistakes.

Slide 82

Unfortunately, Sandra's poor work performance means their team rarely meets its targets.

Jackie is not sure if the team should just put up with it, or make a more formal complaint about it. She does not want to get Sandra into trouble.

Jackie decides that something needs to be done. Should she speak to Sandra herself, or should she talk to her supervisor?

Slide 83

Your trainer will discuss some questions about Jackie's story with you.

Slide 84

Now find the activities about Jackie's story in your workbook.

Your trainer will help you with the activities.

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