The Ombudsman provides an annual report to the union Council advising matters such as the number and nature of complaints received, response times, the number of matters resolved and the number of complaints which were found to have merit.
To ensure that members’ complaints receive the attention they deserve they are to be directed to the Together Secretary in the first instance. A form has been developed to assist members in lodging a formal complaint regarding the union to the Secretary.
You can download the Ombudsman Referral form here or fill out the web form below
The Ombudsman is independent from the union and can review any complaints or concerns of members about the provision of Union services by staff. The Ombudsman will consider issues relating to:
- Provision of industrial services or advice to a member or group of members
- The Union office compliance with guaranteed service standards
The Ombudsman is able to investigate member's complaints or concerns and make recommendations to either the President, the committee which supervises the Ombudsman position or our union's Executive or Council.
In the first instance the Ombudsman will encourage members to attempt to resolve complaints or concerns directly with the union staff or with the Secretary, where appropriate.
Complaints about union services will be investigated by the Ombudsman where members show:
- They have advised the Secretary in writing of the matter; and
- The member is dissatisfied with the outcome as determined by the Secretary;
- The member is dissatisfied with the Secretary's internal processes or procedures in considering the matter or in reaching a decision; or
- The Secretary has failed to respond to the member within 20 business days or any longer period, as agreed.
- The Ombudsman may accept a complaint without the member having first advised the Secretary where the Ombudsman determines that the circumstances warrant direct referral.
Once a matter is accepted for investigation, the Ombudsman will contact the Secretary and provide details of the matter. Within 14 days the Ombudsman will contact the member and provide advice as to the action considered necessary by the Ombudsman to resolve the dispute.
The Ombudsman will assist the parties to explore options for and, if possible, achieve the timely resolution of the dispute by agreement.
The Ombudsman may at his discretion, summarily dispose of any application on the grounds that the matter is:
- lacking in substantive merit; or
- a matter which has been substantially previously dealt with by the Ombudsman.
If the matter is not resolved, the Ombudsman will investigate the issues raised.
Following investigation the Ombudsman will advise the member that he is satisfied with the way union staff dealt with the matter or if he is not satisfied with the way the member's issue was originally dealt with he will write to both the member and the Secretary with a recommendation as to how the issue should be resolved.
At the Ombudsman's discretion and in addition to reporting to the Ombudsman's supervisory committee and making an annual report to the union Council, the Ombudsman may make recommendations regarding complaints or concerns to the union Executive or Council at any time.