From the Ombudsman’s Report - ANALYSIS OF 322 COMPLAINTS

The Complaints Handling Scheme Office (CHS), which was part of the Ombudsman's Office but has operated at arms-length from the Office during the past two years, has been merged with the 'Patients Advocacy and Liaison Service' ("PALS"), which has been set up by the Gibraltar Health Authority ("GHA"). The main reason for this was to improve the complaints handling service to the public by having a single office at the hospital to deal with complaints, in the first instance. It seems to be working well and there has been a reduction in the number of complaints received directly by the Ombudsman. A total of 21 complaints received by the Ombudsman's Office related to the GHA as the majority of health complaints (which used to be tackled in previous years by the CHS) are now being dealt with by PALS at the hospital. 


This year there were 32 complaints received against the Civil Status and Registration Office. This represents a reduction in the number of complaints - 12 complaints less than in 2017. The delay in dealing with applications for naturalisation is still one of the most common complaints received by the Ombudsman against this Government department.


The Housing Authority ("HA") has attracted a total of 610 Complaints at the Ombudsman's Office during the last four years. The average number of complaints received against the HA over the last four years was 152. This year although the number of complaints against the HA have decreased slightly from 179 received last year to 173, the number this year has surpassed the average over the last for years.

The CSRO has attracted 155 Complaints at the Ombudsman's Office during the last four years. This represents an average of 38 complaints per year. Complaints have decreased from 44 last year to 32, which is below the average over the last four years of 38 complaints. Complaints against the CSRO represent 10% of the total number of complaints received at the Ombudsman's Office against Public Service Providers.

46 complaints were classified as being 'Outside the Ombudsman's Jurisdiction';


117 complaints were closed as it was considered that the Complainant(s) had not exhausted all their avenues of redress with the Public Service Provider concerned. These refer to complaints that are lodged at the Ombudsman's Office without the Complainant having formally submitted their complaint to the relevant Public Service Provider, in the first instance. Before a complaint is made to the Ombudsman, the Complainant should try and resolve any issues directly with the Public Service Provider concerned under the Service Provider's own internal complaints procedure;

193 complaints were classified as dealt with by 'Immediate Resolution';

12 complaints were settled informally; and

26 complaints were followed up by the Ombudsman with 'Detailed Investigations', which were concluded by the end of the year. Out of these 26 Detailed Investigations,

A total of 20 cases, which warranted a full investigation and report (assigned to our Investigations Team), have been completed in 2018.

The average time taken by the Ombudsman's Investigations Team to complete a an investigation on a complaint requiring an extensive report has been 12 months.

A total of 6 cases which have been investigated without the need of writing an extensive report were completed in 2018. The average time to complete each of these investigations has been 2.5 months.

The average time taken to complete investigations on complaints (with or without an extensive report) has been 10 months.