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Make a complaint

Any person or group of people dissatisfied with their dealings with the University of Plymouth Students' Union (UPSU) has the right to make a complaint. All complaints will be dealt with fairly, confidentially and promptly. Anyone making a complaint will not be discriminated against as a result of making a complaint.

If you have any questions about this process please email:


UPSU Complaints Procedure

UPSU is committed to delivering a high quality service and we encourage customers to advise us when there is cause for concern and a case for improvement.

1. What is a complaint?

  • 1.1.  A complaint is an expression of dissatisfaction made by either a person or group of people dissatisfied with their dealings with UPSU, student group or in connection with an officially authorised UPSU activity.

2. What is not classified as a complaint under this procedure?

  • 2.1. Every complaint submitted to UPSU will be treated confidentially.  We will not be able to investigate complaints if they are made anonymously.
  • 2.2  We will only accept complaints made by the person / people impacted and not on behalf of another unless permission has been expressly given. 
  • 2.3. We will not progress complaints that we consider to be malicious, vexatious, out of spite or revenge.
  • 2.4. This process cannot be used to express dissatisfaction with UPSU policy or the political decisions of Elected Representatives. Dissatisfaction on this should be directed to the appropriate UPSU governance structure and/or full-time officer, advice on which is available via the UPSU Student Voice department.
  • 2.5. This complaints procedure does not interfere with licensees' obligations to the Courts concerning the running of licensed premises. A licensee has the right to exclude persons from the premises in appropriate circumstances for the safety of others. Please refer to venue and nightclub entry terms

3. Informal complaints

  • 3.1. Most complaints can usually be quickly and satisfactorily resolved informally and where possible these should be dealt with as soon as the matter arises. Therefore, in the first instance, you should initially approach those involved in the service or activity within UPSU. If you are unable to find the correct contact please email
  • 3.2.  We will attempt to resolve the complaint informally as soon as possible. A manager or relevant person shall enquire into the complaint, communicate it with you and advise you of their decision normally within 10 working days after the complaint is received.
  • 3.3. When appropriate, we will look to resolve the complaint via an informal approach about the matter at the earliest opportunity.
  • 3.4. If you cannot resolve your complaint in accordance with this informal approach you may proceed to a formal complaint.

4. Formal Complaints

  • 4.1.  If the informal approach of this procedure did not resolve your problem to a satisfactory conclusion for those involved, you should progress to a formal complaint.
  • 4.2. All formal complaints must be submitted through this online form: link.
  • 4.3. The form must be submitted within 20 working days of the event or circumstances relating to your complaint.
  • 4.4. The relevant Director will speak with everyone involved. They will give you a written response to the complaint normally within 20 working days of you submitting the form.
  • 4.5. The aim is for a solution that is fair and that and satisfies all involved parties.
  • 4.6. If the formal stage does not provide an outcome that you can agree to, you may consider the appeal stage.

5. Appeals

  • 5.1.  If the formal stage did not give you a satisfactory result, a Panel can investigate your complaint.
  • 5.2. The decision of this Panel is binding on all parties.
  • 5.3. To start the appeal you must write to the UPSU Chief Executive within 10 days of receiving the written response from the formal complaint outcome. The complainant must explain why you do not agree with the relevant Director’s outcome.
  • 5.4. The Panel will be made up of three people, two UPSU Students’ Union Sabbatical Officers and the Chief Executive (CEO), none of whom should have previous involvement in the matter. This means that the Panel cannot include any Sabbatical Officer who may have advised you, or who may be involved in the complaint. If this isn’t possible the panel will comprise of  UPSU Trustees.
  • 5.5. The CEO will arrange for the Panel to meet normally within 15 working days of receipt of the appeal.
  • 5.6. The Panel will investigate until they are satisfied that they have all the information they need to decide. If further information is required by the Panel, those involved will be asked for this information, which could be by meeting in person or written.
  • 5.7. The Panel must be fair and can take any action they wish to ensure fairness.
  • 5.8. The Panel will reach its decision privately and will either uphold, partially uphold, or overturn the earlier decision of the Director.
  • 5.9. The decision of the Panel is final, and the complainant will have exhausted the procedure with UPSU.


Complete Complaints Form