The IPAS Customer Service team deals with all queries and complaints from residents and may be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org
The process for a resident making a complaint is set out in the House Rules
and is summarised below:
IPAS has a complaints procedure. It aims to deal with problems quickly and efficiently.
In the first instance, all complaints should be reported informally to your centre manager to be resolved. However, if you feel your complaint cannot be handled by your centre manager, you feel uncomfortable dealing with your centre manager, or your complaint is about the centre manager themselves, you may choose to complain to IPAS directly at email@example.com
If the complaint is not resolved informally by your centre manager, you should submit a formal complaint, in writing, to your centre manager.
If your complaint is still not resolved, you may contact the IPAS Customer Service Team by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
to escalate your complaint. We will then log your complaint and ensure it is appropriately investigated by a member of the IPAS team.
Please note you should not be afraid to complain when you need to. Making a complaint will not affect your International Protection application in any way.
More detail on the complaints process as set out in the House Rules is included below.
Who can use this complaints procedure
The IPAS complaints procedure is open to both you, the resident, and the manager of the centre. This means:
you can complain if you think the centre is not fulfilling its obligations to you, as set out in ‘Part 1: Services’ of the House Rules booklet; and
the manager of the centre you are staying in can complain if they think you are not fulfilling your obligations to the centre as set out in ‘Part 2: House Rules’ of the House Rules booklet
You, the resident, are encouraged to use the complaints procedure to tackle issues and problems that arise in IPAS accommodation centres. For example, if you think that the centre is not fulfilling its obligations to you as set out in ‘Part 1: Services’ of the House Rules booklet, you should use the complaints procedure.
Who will handle the complaint
Where possible and when necessary, your complaint should be handled by someone who is the same gender as you.
Whether your complaint is confidential
All complaints will be handled sensitively and in confidence by centre staff and IPAS, but sometimes they may need to consult other people involved.
Language of your complaint
You may submit your complaint in any language. If IPAS needs to have your complaint translated, it may take them a few days longer to deal with it.
Asking someone to assist you in making a complaint
Residents may seek assistance in making a complaint. For example, they may seek the assistance of a friend, relative, or member of a support group etc. However, IPAS and centre management retain the right to communicate directly with the resident regarding the complaint.
How residents complain
It is expected that most complaints can be resolved quickly and informally. However, sometimes this cannot happen and further stages have to be gone through.
Complaints can be made in four stages:
Step 1: Informally to Centre Manager – verbally
Step 2: Formally to Centre Manager – in writing
Step 3: Formally to IPAS – by email or in writing
Step 4: Appeal to Ombudsman or Ombudsman for Children
Whether your complaint can be handled informally at the Accommodation Centre
Yes. The centre manager must try their best to resolve your issue quickly and informally. If you want to make an informal complaint because you think the centre is not fulfilling its obligations to you, as set out in ‘Part 1: Services’ of the House Rules document, you must tell the centre manager immediately if you become unhappy with the services they are providing.
What happens if you are not happy with how the centre handles your complaint
If you are not satisfied with how the centre manager handles your complaint informally, you may complain formally in writing to them. They will respond to you within 14 days. An example of a complaint form that you can use in this instance is attached below.
How you can complain to IPAS
If, having gone through the above process, you believe your centre has not handled your complaint satisfactorily; you can e-mail or write to IPAS telling them what your original complaint was. An example of a complaint form you can use to complain to IPAS is included below.
You may also attach a copy of the original complaint and the centre manager’s response if you wish.
An appropriate staff member in IPAS will be assigned to deal with your complaint. This staff member will ask you and anyone else involved for observations about the complaint.
The IPAS helpdesk will endeavour to acknowledge and respond to all complaints in accordance with the DCEDIY Customer Charter.
You may also send your complaint to the Customer Services team in IPAS at PO Box 11487, Dublin 2.
Complaining directly to IPAS
In very exceptional and serious circumstances, you may submit your complaint directly to IPAS, bypassing the centre manager. For example, if your complaint is about the centre manager themselves or you do not feel comfortable complaining to the centre manager, you may choose to contact IPAS directly with your complaint.
Complaints to the Office of the Ombudsman or the Office of the Ombudsman for Children
If you are not satisfied with the outcome of your complaint to IPAS you may then submit a complaint to the Office of the Ombudsman or the Office of the Ombudsman for Children as appropriate. Complaints will only be dealt with by these offices if you have already followed the formal complaints procedure which require you to submit complaints to your centre management in the first instance and then, if you are not satisfied with the outcome, to submit a formal complaint to IPAS. The Office of the Ombudsman or the Office of the Ombudsman for Children shall deal with complaints relating to your accommodation and other services provided to you while residing in State provided accommodation. These offices will not deal with matters pertaining to your application for international protection.
How to make a complaint to the Office of the Ombudsman:
In cases where IPAS believes that there is an imminent threat to the safety and security of a centre, an appeal under Step 4 will still be allowed; however, IPAS may have to make decisions and take actions immediately pending the outcome of the appeal.
Review of Certain decisions made under the European Communities (Reception Conditions) Regulations 2018
An applicant must ask for a review within 10 working days from the date of issue of the decision letter.
If the review request relates to labour market access (Regulation 11 or 12) please contact: Review Officer, Labour Market Access Unit, PO Box 12931, Freepost FDN5264, Dublin 2.
For all other reviews (Regulations 4, 5 or 6) above please contact: Review Officer, IPAS, PO Box 11487, Dublin 2.
What happens next
Once a review officer has made their decision, you will be informed in writing. If you are still unhappy with this decision you can ask for an appeal of the review decision to the International Protection Appeals Tribunal (IPAT). This is requested under Regulation 21 of the Regulations and must be done in writing in the form specified in Schedule 7 of the Regulations.