Compliments and Complaints

Date published: 16 November 2023 12:13

We always want to hear what you think of our service. It helps us improve when we get things wrong and rewards staff for their hard work when they get it right.

Making a complaint or leaving a ‘thank you’ could not be easier.

Alternatively, you can pursue the following routes:


By post

If you would like to send a letter of appreciation into South Yorkshire Police, please write to the Force Professional Standards Department at:
Unit 20
Sheffield 35A Business Park
Churchill Way
S35 2PY

By phone

You can call 101 to give us your feedback.


In person

You can visit any Enquiry Desk and ask to speak to the duty inspector or sergeant.

By phone

You can call 101 to give us your feedback.

By email

You can email the details of your complaint to complaints_and_discipline@southyorks.pnn.police.uk

By post

You can write to our Professional Standards Department;

Unit 20
Sheffield 35A Business Park
Churchill Way
S35 2PY

Through the IOPC

The Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC), oversee the police complaints system and investigate the most serious incidents and complaints involving the police. More information on the IOPC.

Complaints FAQs

Who looks after the complaint process?

The Police Reform Act 2002 governs how complaints against police staff should be dealt with. This act created the Independent Office for Police Conduct, which replaced the Police Complaints Authority. The police record all complaints and each force has a Professional Standards Department (PSD) to receive and investigate complaints.

When can I expect a response from my complaint?

You can expect to hear back within 15 working days about whether a complaint has been recorded and if it has not, the reasons why.

The person looking into your complaint must keep you informed about the progress of the investigation. They should agree with you how you would like to be kept informed – this could be by phone, in person or by letter. You must receive an update at least every 28 days.

How will my complaint be resolved?

Most complaints will be resolved through proportionate enquiry undertaken by our Complaints Resolution Team

Allegations of rudeness, for example, are unlikely to be the subject of a full investigation and will be resolved by the Complaints Resolution Team. More serious complaints will be investigated thoroughly or referred to the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC).

How do I find out what’s happening with an ongoing investigation?

Whether the Police or the IOPC is investigating your complaint, you will be informed about:

  • How your complaint will be investigated
  • What co-operation they require from you
  • How a decision will be reached
  • The action that may be taken at the conclusion of an investigation

The investigator will also agree with you how often and by which method you would like to be kept informed.

What will happen when the investigation is finished?

At the end of the investigation we will inform you of the conclusions, which could be:

  • Not enough evidence to uphold your complaint. This does not mean that you have not been believed, rather that there is insufficient evidence to prove or disprove the allegation(s) made.
  • We may decide to improve or amend our procedures in response to a complaint.
  • We may take formal disciplinary or other management action against a member of staff.
  • We may refer your case to the Crown Prosecution Service for advice on criminal prosecution.
  • We may undertake Reflective Practice with the officer to ensure that learning opportunities are captured and lessons are learned, rather than taking punitive action.

Do I have a right of appeal?

You may have a right of appeal to the Independent Office for Police Conduct or Chief Constable where:

  • We have not recorded your complaint.
  • We have not made a decision whether to record your complaint.
  • We have not informed you of our decision not to record your complaint.
  • You disagree with the action we propose to take as a result of the investigation.
  • You have not been provided with adequate information about the findings of the investigation.
  • You are not satisfied with the outcome of the police investigation.

You can appeal to the IOPC at the following address:

Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC)
PO Box 473
M33 0BW
Website: www.policeconduct.gov.uk  
Tel: 0300 020 0096

Can I get an old complaint re-investigated?

When a complaint has been dealt with and closed, it cannot be re-opened or re-investigated.