Complaints about Havering’s children’s services rise year-on-year

Havering Town Hall. Picture: KEN MEARS

Havering Town Hall - Credit: Ken Mears

The number of complaints about Havering’s children’s services department has increased. 

A report presented to the borough’s children and learning overview and scrutiny committee on Thursday (January 20), revealed the service received 87 stage one complaints between April 2020 and March 2021, a nine per cent increase on the 80 received for the year prior. 

Despite this, the council’s spending on investigations was reduced by 78 per cent because complaints are being resolved at an early stage. 

Investigations cost the council more than £19,500 in 2019/20, declining to just over £6,000 in the most recent figures. 

While the total number of complaints which escalated to stage two in both 2020/21 and the year prior stayed level at six, three in the more recent period were not progressed. 

In two cases, complaints were successfully resolved through virtual meetings, while another was not progressed due to court proceedings. 

The number of stage one complaints regarding “attitude/behaviour of staff” decreased by 50 per cent, the meeting heard.