Making a complaint

The department is committed to listening to you and responding to your concerns.

Note: We do not manage complaints about Medicare, Centrelink, Child Support or the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS), so please contact them directly to make a complaint as follows:

What can you make a complaint about?

You can make a complaint about any service provided by the department or one of its funded service providers. We want our services to work for people who need and use them. We can always do better and we listen to people using our services, their advocates and representatives.

We want to know if:

  • You feel a service is unsatisfactory
  • You did not receive enough information or choice
  • You were denied respect, dignity or privacy.

When handling your complaint we will:

  • Provide information that is helpful, accurate, and easy to understand
  • Be courteous and considerate in our communication
  • Promptly refer requests to the appropriate person
  • Respond to your matter within a reasonable time
  • Keep you informed of progress or delays.

How to make a complaint

Take the following steps to get your complaint resolved:

Step 1. Discuss your complaint with a staff member, housing officer, your case worker or from the place where you are receiving the service.

Step 2. If you have tried to resolve your concerns but you are still dissatisfied with the outcome, you can discuss your complaint with a senior manager at the local office.

Step 3. If we cannot resolve your complaint at Step 1 or Step 2, you can choose one of the following ways to make a formal complaint to the department:

  • Submit your complaint online using the Make a complaint eform
  • Telephone the department’s Feedback Service on 1300 884 706
  • Email the department’s Feedback Service via feedback@dffh.vic.gov.au
  • Mail: Complaints, GPO Box 4057, Melbourne, Victoria 3000.

If you need assistance

The List of Advocacy Organisations in Victoria provides a list of organisations in Victoria which provide advocacy services and can be contacted by any person seeking assistance when communicating with the department.

If you prefer or need another person or organisation to assist or represent you in making and/or resolving your complaint with the department, we will communicate with you through your representative if this is your wish. Anyone may represent a person wishing to make a complaint with their consent. 

We will ask for your permission before we communicate with your advocate. You can give your permission in writing or over the phone. Information about the ways in which you can contact us can be found at the department’s contact us webpage.

Anonymous complaints

There are a couple of ways to make an anonymous complaint. 

You can make a complaint without disclosing who you are. 

You can provide your name and contact details but ask to have your complaint to be marked anonymous. We will not pass your information on to anyone if you do this.

If you make an anonymous complaint, we will not be able to:

  • contact you if we need more information
  • let you know the outcome of your complaint.

Please let us know if disclosing your name or having us pass on your information worries you.

Other contacts

Make a report about a child that is at risk

Report a housing maintenance issue

  • Contact the Housing Call Centre on 13 11 72.
Your privacy

We recognise that your personal and health information should only be used, or disclosed for the purpose for which we collect it, or for a related purpose that you would reasonably expect, or as otherwise permitted or required by law.

We will use the information you provide us to investigate and resolve your complaint, and in accordance with our Privacy Policy. The investigation of your complaint may involve sharing your personal or health information with other relevant areas within the department to achieve a resolution. If a third party was involved, we may also need to discuss your complaint with them.

We may seek further information from you in relation to your complaint. If you do not provide us with information regarding your complaint, this may limit our ability to assist you.

You may seek access to information we collect about you. For further details, see our Making a Freedom of Information request page.

Need assistance?

The department can arrange an interpreter to help with language services. You may ask someone else to lodge a complaint on your behalf. However, they must have your permission to do this.

Lodging a complaint and seeking a resolution can sometimes involve sensitive issues. The department can provide assistance and support throughout the process of making a complaint.

Advocacy services can also help and support throughout the process of making a complaint. 

Other organisations you can contact

You may also wish to take your complaint to one of the following organisations:

Disability Services Commissioner

The Disability Services Commissioner works with people with a disability, and disability services to resolve complaints.

Telephone: 1800 677 342 (free call). Web: www.odsc.vic.gov.au

Victorian Ombudsman

The Ombudsman has the power to investigate complaints about State and local government authorities. The Ombudsman investigates complaints made about decisions, actions or inaction by these bodies.

Telephone: 9613 6222. Regional: 1800 806 314 Web: www.ombudsman.vic.gov.au

Office of the Victorian Information Commissioner

The Office of the Victorian Information Commissioner will investigate complaints about a Victorian Government agency or local council’s failure to comply with one or more of the Information Privacy Principles.

Telephone: 1300 006 842 Web: www.ovic.vic.gov.au 

Children and young people in out-of-home care

If you're a child or young person living in out-of-home care and you want to make a complaint, see Making a complaint for children and young people in out-of-home care.