Complaint policy

In case of complaints we kindly suggest taking our complaint policy into account.

Article 1 – Definition of terms

The terms of this procedure are defined as follows:
a. complaint: in the context of this procedure, a complaint is any written expression of grievance by or on behalf of a complainant regarding the service provision/working method of the Simavi Foundation in general or regarding the actions or negligence of individual members of the staff of Simavi, the management of Simavi or the members of Simavi’s Board of Trustees, that has not been corrected after initial steps to raise the complaint have been taken informally.

b. complainant: any natural or legal person who files a written complaint. There are special procedures for complaints by members of the staff of Simavi.

c. Complaints Coordinator: the Head of the Department of Communication and Fundraising, the Head of the Project Department, the Head of the Administrative Department and/or the Chief Executive of Simavi are designated to act as Complaints Coordinators.

Article 2 – Who can submit a complaint

Any natural or legal person may submit a complaint.

Article 3 – Letter of Complaint

1. A complaint is filed by submitting a letter of complaint to the Chief Executive of Simavi at the Simavi office in Haarlem, the Netherlands.
2. The letter of complaint must be signed and should include at least:
a) name and address of the complainant;
b) the date of writing;
c) a description of the act/behaviour complained about;
d) the reason why the complainant objects to this act/behaviour.

Article 4 – Confirmation of receipt

The Chief Executive of Simavi shall issue a written confirmation of receipt of the letter of complaint and shall register the receipt of the letter in the complaint register within one working week. The confirmation of receipt will include information about the complaints procedure, the Complaints Coordinator that will handle the complaint and the time that will be required to process the complaint.

Article 5 – Period of processing and adjournment

1. The Complaints Coordinator responsible shall process the complaint within six weeks from the date of receiving the letter of complaint.

2. The Complaints Coordinator responsible can adjourn the processing of the complaint for a maximum of four weeks. This adjournment will be communicated in writing to both the complainant and the person complained against.

Article 6 – Processing of the complaint

1. The complaint shall be processed by the Complaints Coordinator responsible. If the complaint concerns the conduct of the Complaints Coordinator, the complaint shall be processed by the Chief Executive of Simavi.
2. The Head of the Department of Communication and Fundraising is responsible, as Complaints Coordinator, for complaints that concern external communication and fundraising.
3. Head of the Project Department is responsible, as Complaints Coordinator, for complaints that concern projects and organisations involved in the implementation of projects supported by Simavi (project holders and partners).
4. The Head of the Administrative Department is responsible, as Complaints Coordinator, for complaints that concern financial transactions and administrative systems.

Article 7 – Investigation and hearings

1. In response to the complaint, the persons mentioned in article 6 of this procedure shall conduct an investigation into the facts of the act/behaviour that is complained about (the hearing).
2. The complainant and the person complained against are offered the opportunity to put their cases to the Complaints Coordinator. To ensure the impartiality of the reporting, the hearing will be attended/read by one other member of staff of Simavi (in principle the office manager).
3. Should the complainant and/or the person complained about decline their right to be heard, no such hearing will take place.
4. To ensure impartiality, a report of the hearing will be drawn up by Complaints Coordinator and the staff member of Simavi involved in the hearing. This report shall be forwarded to the Chief Executive of Simavi, the complainant, the person complained about and the Complaint Coordinator. A copy of the report will be filed in the complaints register. If the complaint concerns the conduct of the Chief Executive or a member of the Board of Trustees, a copy of the report shall be forwarded to the Board of Trustees of Simavi, for the attention of the Chairman and the Secretary of the Board of Trustees.

Article 8 – Adjudication

The Chief Executive shall study the findings of the investigation and the report to make a judgment. If the complaint concerns the conduct of the Chief Executive, the judgment will be made by the Chairman together with the Secretary or the Treasurer of the Board of Trustees of Simavi. If the complaint concerns the conduct of a Board member, the judgment will be formed by the other members of the Board of Trustees.

Article 9 – Announcement of the judgment

1. The Complaints Coordinator will provide the complainant with a written and explanatory judgment based on the findings of the investigation, including the possible consequences thereof. The report of the hearings, as described in Article 7, will be attached to the judgment. A copy will be forwarded to the person complained about; copies of the judgment may also be sent to his/her superior and others involved in the investigation.
2. If the complainant is dissatisfied with the settlement of his/her complaint, he/she may turn to Simavi’s Board of Trustees, via the Board’s Secretary. The Board will then assess whether the complaints procedure has been conducted in the correct manner.

Article 10

Registration of the judgment in the complaints register All judgments of processed complaints are recorded in the complaints register. This register is administered by the Office Manager of Simavi, at the office of Simavi in Haarlem, the Netherlands.

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