Complaints data for Erewash Borough Council now available at the click of a button

Published on: Thursday, 1st August 2019

For the first time, the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman’s annual complaints details about every council in the East Midlands including Erewash Borough Council are now available in an easy-to-use interactive map.

Every year the Ombudsman writes to each authority with details of the complaints and enquiries it has received, and the decisions it has made about those complaints it has investigated.  These annual letters are published on the Ombudsman’s website every July.

Alongside the annual letters, the Ombudsman has created the innovative map which gives people the chance to see how their local authority is performing at the click of a button.  The new map collates the annual letters, how often the authority has complied with Ombudsman recommendations, the improvements they have agreed to implement to improve services potentially for thousands, and published decisions all in one place.  The map will be updated every time a new investigation is published about an authority.

For the Erewash borough, as of the time of publication of this article, the Ombudsman had not carried out any detailed investigations, had not made any compliance recommendations nor had upheld any detailed investigations during the 2018/19 financial year.  All decisions are summarised online whilst there is also an annual letter archive.  The Ombudsman can write to an authority to give a summary of complaints statistics recorded about them, and their performance in responding to any necessary investigations.  Public reports and, where applicable, service improvements are also shown.

Michael King, Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman, said: ”We were the first Ombudsman scheme in the UK to publish every decision we made on our website, and we’re now the first to put all that data and more, at everyone’s fingertips via our interactive map.  The searchable map will include all the data we hold on every local authority in England.

“All too often conversations about complaints focus on raw numbers.  We believe it’s the outcomes of these - service changes that make things better for many people in the area - that can really make the difference.

“We hope this new tool, showing the real-world improvements made and the lessons that can be shared, will allow council officers the opportunity to learn from complaints, councillors to scrutinise complaints and decisions about their authorities, and local residents to hold their local authorities to account.”

Data from this year’s statistics show in the East Midlands area:

  • 8% of all complaints received were about this region
  • 49% of all cases investigated in this region were upheld
  • Most complaints in this region were about Children and Education Services (23%)
  • Fewest complaints about Highways and Transport and Corporate and Other (7%)
  • Highest uphold rate in this region was in Benefits and Taxation (77%)
  • Lowest uphold rate in this region was in Highways and Transport (25%)
  • Lowest uphold rates nationally for Adult Social Care (58%), Children and Education Services and (61%) Highways and Transport (25%)   

Nationally, the Ombudsman registered 16,899 complaints and enquiries about local authorities in 2018-19.  The service completed 4,232 detailed investigations, and upheld 58% of those investigations, up slightly on 57% the previous year.

More than a third of the complaints and enquiries received were about children’s and education services, and adult social care, and in both these areas the Ombudsman upheld two thirds (66%) of the complaints it investigated.

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