Complaints about Council services

Here at Merri-bek City Council we believe that complaints are a way for you to tell us what we got wrong, to bring something to our attention, an opportunity for us to fix a problem, and a way for us to learn what we could do better.

That’s why, if you express dissatisfaction about something we’ve done, or decided, we will record that as a complaint. By doing this, we’re able to better see what our customers like about what we do, and what we need to work on to get better.

How to make a complaint

There are a few ways that you can tell us about your complaint:

  • Phone Council on 9240 1111
  • Post a letter to Merri-bek City Council, Locked Bag 10, Merri-bek 3058
  • Visit a Council Customer Service Centre
  • We also have options for using interpreters, Speak & Listen, Fax, TTY and internet replay via our contact page

What to expect

We have an easy to follow 3 tier complaint system. Here’s how it works:

To see a larger version of the diagram below please click on the image.

Complaint Process (PDF 178Kb)

  • We will record your complaint and provide a reference number either by email or phone when you submit your complaint.
  • We will investigate and attempt to resolve the complaint within 28 days where possible.
  • Complaints about the quality, delay or failure to deliver a service are generally dealt with by council officers at tier 1.
  • Complaints about a policy decision or officer conduct are dealt with by council team leaders and managers at tier 2.
  • If you believe a mistake was made at tier 2, you can request an internal review.
  • Internal reviews check for mistakes and areas of improvement in our services, they are not an appeals process.
  • Internal reviews are dealt with by the Complaints Resolution Coordinator at tier 3 (tier 2 must be completed first).

Asking for your complaint to be escalated

  • After your complaint is resolved and you think there has been a mistake, you can complain about the way your complaint was investigated or the result.
  • To escalate your complaint you will need to call 9240 1111, this is so we can triage your complaint and send it to the right person. You may be asked why you think your complaint needs to be escalated. Escalations will be handled by the next highest tier.
  • Not all complaints will be escalated. Council may decide not to investigate or escalate a complaint depending on the nature of the complaint or reasons for escalation.

You can read our Complaints Handling Policy here

If you are not satisfied with the way your complaint is handled after internal processes have been exhausted, you may elect to pursue matters with the Victorian State Ombudsman. Where there are external appeal mechanisms available, for example for Town Planning complaints, these can be referred to VCAT.

Victorian Ombudsman
Level 9, North Tower
459 Collins Street
Melbourne, Victoria 3000

Telephone: 9613 6222
Toll Free: 1800 806 314
Facsimile: 9614 0246
Email Victorian Ombudsman
Victorian Ombudsman website