Making a complaint
When can you make a complaint and how is it done?
Do you have a complaint?
If you are a victim of crime or a witness to a criminal offence and you don’t believe that:
- A justice agency or victims’ service has treated you fairly or as expected under the Victims’ Charter.
- The agency has adequately resolved your dissatisfaction with their treatment.
Then you can make a complaint to the Commissioner.
Agencies that the Commissioner can investigate include:
- Victoria Police (including investigations and prosecutions).
- The Office of Public Prosecutions.
- Victims’ support services (such as the Victims’ Helpline, Victims Assistance Programs).
Video: Making a complaint to the Victims of Crime Commissioner
Make a complaint
If an agency has not followed the rules outlined in the Victims' Charter, and you are unable to resolve the matter with them directly, contact the Commissioner.
The complaint process.
When you contact us, we’ll listen to your experience and make sure you understand what’s involved in making a complaint, the possible outcomes and what information is required.
After the required information has been gathered, the Commissioner can then assess your experience and decide to:
- Progress to the investigation stage.
- Refer you to another organisation more able to assist.
During the information gathering and assessment process, you may be advised that your complaint is not about a breach of the Victims’ Charter, or may fall outside of the Commissioner’s powers, and therefore cannot be investigated by the Commissioner.
If your complaint can’t be investigated, we still value hearing about your experience with the justice system, and your story can help the Commissioner push for change to improve the experiences of all victims.
The investigation process is thorough and involves:
- Requesting information from the agency or agencies involved in your complaint.
- Comparing those submissions to your stated experience.
- Establishing if breaches of the Victims’ Charter have occurred.
If breaches of the Victims’ Charter have occurred, the Commissioner is then able to recommend such things as:
- Apologies from the agency or agencies for their treatment.
- Additional training for agency staff.
- Explanations, additional information, or a facilitated meeting.
- Policy changes to minimise further negative experiences for victims.
These steps and your involvement in them can help improve the justice system for victims.
The Commissioner can only recommend agencies take these actions or make changes. The Commissioner cannot require or direct an agency to do anything.