Self-advocacy: “Do it yourself” trouble-shooting and problem-solving
1. Know your issues
Make sure you are clear about what your issues are. Write a list. (This can be very helpful if you are feeling angry, upset or distressed by what has happened.) Talk the issues over with a friend you respect.
2. Identify a solution
Ask yourself: “What do I need to put it right?”
3. Find the next step
How have I resolved such issues previously?
What options do I have?
4. Identify any support you need
What support do I need as I go about resolving this? Do I want whānau, family or friends to support me?
5. Communicate your issue
Write the service provider a letter of complaint which you can post, fax or email to them, OR
telephone them and ask to meet with the person/staff members who upset you, and the complaints officer (if there is one) or someone else from the service to discuss the complaint.
6. Have a meeting
A face-to-face meeting (kanohi kit e kanohi) is an effective way of raising your issues and resolving complaints.
In the meeting you can:
- Tell your story
- Listen to their explanations
- Agree on what will put matters right (this might include discussing changes to the service so what happened to you does not happen again to you or to someone else)
- Accept their apologies (if this is appropriate)
- Agree on “Where to from here?”
Don’t know where to start? Need some help?
Call a Health and Disability Advocate to assist you: Free-phone 0800 555 050.
Last reviewed February 2019