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Lib Dem Pastoral Care Officer: the first 50 days

March 5, 2014 2:40 PM
Originally published by UK Liberal Democrats

Jeanne Tarrant, new Pastoral Care Officer at the Liberal Democrats, gives an update on her first weeks in the role.

I have now been in post for two months and it has been both busy and exciting. In the initial 2-3 weeks, I undertook an analysis of the Party's processes for receiving and managing complaints. Analysing, how the constituent parties manage complaints and how the different procedures, rules and constitutions relate to each other. I met with many people as I could, to gain an understanding of the processes, the responsibility for implementing them and when and how the rules are used. I have enjoyed meeting lots of different people to obtain their views on how the Party works.

In between, I have offered advice and support for those dealing with or making complaints. In general, the majority of the complaints are relationship type complaints, where the complainant feels aggrieved by something said or done by the accused. I can't investigate the complaints, but I can offer a different view point on the issues. My approach has been to try to see if the complaints could be resolved locally without recourse to the Party's disciplinary processes. Where this is necessary I have tried to support the various parties through the relevant processes.

I have completed guides to making and managing complaints and one on safeguarding young people and vulnerable adults. I am currently working on identifying those individuals who receive currently complaints and a staff survey which will cover all paid and unpaid staff including volunteers with a focus on diversity and complaints. Next steps are ensuring that these documents and any documents I create are easily accessible via the website.

I am looking forward to going to Spring Conference in York this weekend and meeting with many more of you. Please come and say hello.