What can the Community Advocate do for me?
- Investigates citizens' complaints
- The Community Advocate may make recommendations to correct problems, to improve efficiency and foster good relations between citizens and public employees.
- The Community Advocate will assist walk-in citizens with problems and refer them to the appropriate sources.
- The Community Advocate will also educate local groups, clubs/organizations and citizens on how to get results from the City.
- Provides callers with information and referrals.
If you have a complaint and don't know where to start:
- Start by taking your complaint to the department involved. Often departmental staff will be able to resolve your issue quickly.
- If you do not know which department to contact or who to take your problem to, contact the Community Advocate for a referral to appropriate person who can assist.
Steps to take prior to contacting the appropriate person:
- First, be prepared.
- Second, know what questions you are going to ask (it helps to write them down).
- Third, have any available information at hand before you contact the department.
After contacting the appropriate person:
- First be pleasant: Treat employees as you like to be treated. Getting angry or rude will not resolve your problem. Public employees, like most of us, respond favorable to a positive and courteous approach. Remember, public employees are citizens just like you. As citizens they must follow the same laws and regulations as you do.
- Second keep records: take notes and ask for names and titles of employees you speak with. Save your correspondence.
- Third inform the department representative of your concern and what you think the resolution should be. Some complaints may be a simple misunderstanding of government procedures or individual rights and most complaints can be resolved by a fact-finding effort with the department involved.
If you are still not satisfied: