Wednesday, February 06, 2008

LCA Complaints System - 'Loses' Complaints

We knew it wouldn't be long before we had evidence that LCA's complaint system was not..ummm all that efficient.

We were warned some time ago by an official not to rely on reporting noise complaints to LCA alone and that to ALWAYS copy in Newham's Environmental Health Officer - Robin Whitehouse.

And over these past few weeks we've found out just why that official's advice was so good, and reliable.

A resident this week emailed to tell us that they had made around a handful of noise complaints to LCA in the last part of 2007. They were therefore amazed not to see one of their complaints listed in the London City Consultative Committee Minutes for January 2008 which would have covered that period. That resident has since been told that the complaints were incorrectly treated as 'planning enquiries' and that Rob Grafton had been off ill so they had not been logged.

In addition, by sheer coincidence, yet another resident got in contact with us here at FTF to tell us that they had also made 'several' complaints to LCA and had received no response at all. In fact when it was followed up they also found that the complaints had not been logged at all.

Now even if we were feeling generous towards LCA and accepted that this was gross incompetence and inefficiency on one 'lost' complaint - we certainly could not explain why they managed to 'lose' over 10 complaints from just 2 residents in a short time. We believe that these two are just the tip of the iceberg...and we'll be out and about keeping our eyes and ears to the ground for more examples like this.

It really does indicate that LCA have an inefficient and unreliable complaint handling system and that it has clearly shown no improvement over the years. What exactly is Newham Council doing to monitor LCA's complaint system? It's going to be difficult for LCA to spin the low complaints records in view of such evidence.

How can LCA honestly claim in their planning application that complaints are low?

Well I think we all know how they can claim that now!! But as to it being an accurate claim..well that's another story!

Our advice to you is to forward all your complaints to:

Mr R Whitehouse
London Borough of Newham
Alice Billings House
2-12 West Ham Lane
E15 4SF
Telephone: 020 8534 4545, Extn 25771, Fax: 020 8557 8869