What is a Grievance Procedure?
At Webster Cantrell Youth Advocacy, clients have the right to present grievances up to and including the CEO or comparable position to rectify unanswered questions or problems. A grievance is defined as any condition brought about by the Agency or any of its staff that a client (or person concerned for a client) feels is unjust or inequitable.
Who can file a Grievance?
The following individuals can file a grievance:
A client (a client is defined as: any child, youth, adult, or family receiving services from the Agency)
A family member of a client
Foster or adoptive family member of a client
Other concerned person having knowledge of a child, youth, adult, or family receiving services from the Agency
2.11 Client grievance
If clients disagree with established rules of conduct, policies, or practices, they can express their concern through the problem resolution procedure. No client will be penalized, formally or informally, for voicing a complaint with Webster Cantrell Youth Advocacy in a reasonable, business-like manner, or for using the problem resolution procedure. If a situation occurs when clients believe that a condition of services or a decision affecting them is unjust or inequitable, they are encouraged to make use of the following steps. The client may discontinue the procedure at any step.
The client should present the problem in writing to his or her immediate case worker within ten (10) calendar days of the occurrence of a problem. If the case worker is unavailable or the client believes it would be inappropriate to contact that person, the client may present the problem to the case worker’s supervisor.
The case worker responds to the problem via a discussion with the client after consulting with appropriate administration when necessary. The case worker documents the discussion. If the case worker and the client are able to resolve the issue via the discussion, no further action is needed.
If the problem is still unresolved, the client presents the problem in writing to the Director of the program within ten (10) calendar days of receiving the response form the case worker.
The Director of the program counsels and advises the client, reviews the problem and recommends a resolution.
If the problem is still unresolved, the client may file a written grievance with the Chief Clinical Officer by stating the nature of the problem in writing within ten (10) calendar days of receiving the response from the Director of the program.
The Chief Clinical Officer counsels and advises the client, reviews the problem and recommends a resolution.
If the problem is still unresolved, the client may file a written grievance with the Chief Executive Officer by stating the nature of the problem in writing within ten (10) calendar days of receiving the response from the Chief Clinical Officer.
The Chief Executive Officer counsels and advises the client, reviews the problem and recommends a resolution.
If the problem is still unresolved, the client may file a written grievance with the Board President by stating the nature of the problem in writing within ten (10) calendar days of receiving the response from the Chief Executive Officer.
The Board President reviews and considers the problem. Depending on the nature of the problem, the Board President may assign a Board committee to address the problem or assign other such Board involvement as deemed necessary. The Board President or committee may request an interview with the client at their discretion. The Board of Directors determines the final action to resolve the problem and notifies the Chief Executive Officer of their decision. The Chief Executive Officer informs the client of the decision within ten (10) calendar days, and forwards a copy of the written response to the case worker for the client file. The Board of Directors has full authority to make any adjustment deemed appropriate to resolve the problem.
A client has a right to submit a grievance against the Chief Executive Officer directly to the Board of Directors.
Not every problem can be resolved to everyone’s total satisfaction, but only through understanding and discussion of mutual problems can clients and management develop confidence in each other. This confidence is important to the operation of an efficient and harmonious work environment, and helps to ensure everyone’s job security.
What happens after you file a Grievance?
The client or guardian will be informed on how his or her grievance(s) will be handled at the Agency level. Grievances can be expected to be resolved in a timely manner. The CEO's decision on the grievance shall constitute a final administrative decision (except when such decisions are reviewable by the Agency's Board of Directors, in which case the Board's decision is the final authority at the Agency level). The grievant (the individual who files the grievance) may appeal adverse decisions to the highest level possibly in the agency and be given staff assistance in so doing, as requested.
In all cases, the grievance process is conducted fairly, without intimidation or retaliation and with the goal of encouraging open and productive communication between clients and/or persons concerned for clients and the Agency.
In every instance in which a client or person concerned for a client wishes to file a grievance, a copy of the Grievance Procedure will be given to the client, concerned individual, and/or parent or guardian. If needed, an Agency staff member may assist with the preparation and conduct of the grievance on behalf of the grievant. A record of grievances and the response to those grievances will be maintained by the Agency.
Filing a Grievance about our Privacy Practices:
If you think we may have violated your privacy rights, or you disagree with a decision we made about access to your Protected Health Information (PHI), you may file a complaint/grievance with the privacy officer contact listed below. You also may file a written complaint with the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, or reach the Secretary by phone. That information is also below. No retaliation from our agency can occur as a result of any grievances filed.
For more details about privacy, visit our Privacy Practice & Client Rights page.
Effective Date: This notice was effective on April 14, 2003.
Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
200 Independence Avenue, S.W.
Washington, D.C. 20201