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Staff complaints (2021)

Request

  1. How many complaints have been received by the Independent Complaints and Grievance Scheme since it was launched?

- Please can the figures be broken down by year (including the latest data for this year) - and also by category (e.g. bullying, harassment and sexual misconduct).

- Please can you detail how many of the complaints relate to MPs or peers, and how many to other house staff. Ideally I would like these broken down by category as well.

 

Response

In the first instance please note that while the Independent Complaints and Grievance Scheme is a bicameral team of the House of Commons and the House of Lords and provides a route by which to make a complaint about the behaviour of any person part of the parliamentary community, the information below, unless otherwise noted, only covers the House of Commons. That is, it includes complaints where the respondent is Member of Parliament, their staff and staff of the House of Commons Administration. For information about complaints relating to Peers, their staff or staff of the House of Lords Administration, you may wish to forward your request to the House of Lords.

1) How many complaints have been received by the Independent Complaints and Grievance Scheme since it was launched?
- Please can the figures be broken down by year (including the latest data for this year) - and also by category (e.g. bullying, harassment and sexual misconduct).
- Please can you detail how many of the complaints relate to MPs or peers, and how many to other house staff. Ideally I would like these broken down by category as well.

This information is held by the House of Commons.

When a person makes a complaint it is known as a ‘disclosure’ and is either investigated under the Bullying and Harassment Policy or the Sexual Misconduct Policy.

The number of disclosures made under each policy, each year.

Disclosures are broken down by the relevant ‘decision-making body’, which refers to who makes the decision about the sanctions as a result of any disclosure. This shows who the disclosure was about:

• ‘PCS’ refers to the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards, meaning the respondent is an MP
• ‘MP’ means the respondent is an MP’s member of staff
• ‘HoC’ means the respondent is a member of staff of the House of Commons Administration
• ‘PDS’ means the respondent is a member of staff of the Parliamentary Digital Service (a bicameral service)
• The ‘Other’ category covers persons complained about that are not covered by the standard decision-making bodies, such as contractors
• ‘Ineligible’ disclosures are those that were assessed against the two policies and ruled as not being eligible to be investigated
• The ‘Total disclosures’ row is a total for this information, and does not include information relating solely to the House of Lords.

Please also note that, since the ICGS was established on 19 July 2018, each year in the table below runs from 19 July of one year to 18 July of the following year, unless otherwise stated.

Some information in the table has been redacted. This is because, owing to the low numbers of individuals involved, disclosing this data may make it possible for individuals to be identified. In most cases, this is because the number itself is very low (lower than 5). In other cases, the number might be higher than 5, but disclosing it would allow the precise value of other figures below 5 to be calculated. In both cases, this information is therefore exempt by virtue of section 40 (2) of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA), as disclosure of this information to the public generally, in the House’s view, would not be consistent with data protection principles in Article 5 of the UK General Data Protection Regulation. This is an absolute exemption and the public interest test does not apply.