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Making A Complaint

Who can make a complaint?

  • If you are a WIDA service user and you feel you are being treated unfairly, you can make a complaint.
  • If you are a relative or friend of a WIDA service user, you can make a complaint on their behalf so long as you have their permission.
  • If you are a close relative or carer of a service user who has died, you can still make a complaint about how they were treated.

What can I complain about?

  • if you believe you are being treated unfairly in any way, or,
  • if you believe WIDA are doing something wrong.

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How can I make my complaint?

You can make a complaint:

  • by talking to a staff member,
  • by writing to us, or ,
  • by emailing us.

Who do I complain to?

If you want to complain by talking to someone:

  • choose a staff member that you trust and tell them what your complaint is about, or,
  • get a family member or friend to talk for you.

If you want to complain in writing:

  • address your complaint to:
    • Claire Looney or, Teresa Harhen, Complaints Officer, WIDA, 2 Belmont Road, Ferrybank, Co Waterford.
  • If you want to complain by email:
    • address your complaint to:

Does WIDA investigate every complaint they get?

No. We will not investigate:

  • anonymous complaints against individual staff members – if you want to complain about a staff member, you must give us your own name and contact details;
  • complaints that are going through or have already gone through a different complaints procedure or have gone to court;
  • complaints that might interfere with a Garda investigation;
  • complaints where the cause has nothing to do with WIDA itself – for example, social welfare entitlements, medical treatment and so on.

Also, we will not investigate ‘malicious’ complaints – that is, a complaint that is made to deliberately cause trouble.

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How long will it take?

Complaints might have to go through several stages. If you’re not happy with the outcome of our investigation into your complaint, you can choose to move on to the next stage.

The stages are:

Stage 1

These are usually complaints made by talking to a staff member. Some can be resolved within 24 hours. If you’re not satisfied with our response, you can move to the next stage.

Stage 2

These are complaints made in writing and we try to have them resolved within 30 working days. Again, if you’re not satisfied, you can move on to the next stage.

Stage 3

These are complaints that couldn’t be resolved in the earlier stages so they are referred to higher authority within WIDA. This can take another 20 working days. At the end of Stage 3, you can move on again if you’re still not satisfied.

Stage 4

This stage deals with complaints that have come through the earlier stages but are still not settled. These complaints are referred to the Health Services Executive (HSE) and might even end up going to the Ombudsman. The HSE or the Ombudsman’s Office will let you know how long you can expect to wait for a result.

No matter what stage your complaint is at, we will keep you informed on its progress.

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How long do I have to make a complaint?

You should make your complaint within 12 months of the incident that caused you to be dissatisfied or unhappy with the service you received.

The Complaints Officer can extend this timeframe in some circumstances. For example, you might get a time extension if you can’t make your complaint because you are ill. When you apply for a time extension, you will be told within 5 days if it has been granted.

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For more information, contact:

Teresa Harhen,

Assistant Director of Nursing (Respite)

051 897822

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For more information, contact:

Fran Parsons,

Assistant Director of Nursing (Residential and Day Service)

051 897822

Human Rights Committee

WIDA has a Human Rights Committee and policies and procedures around this. The purpose of this is to:

Ensure that the staff and the service users and their representatives are aware of the service user rights and how to request the committees assistance where they are concerned about a rights restriction. If you feel that someone in you care needs the help of this service you should contact:


Mary Lonergan: 051 856 961


Catriona O' Driscoll: 051 858 764