26th November 2013
Eleven PHSO complainants were invited to a private meeting with members of the PASC committee on 26th November and phsothefacts.com attended that meeting. We were all given the opportunity to speak briefly about our own cases and as we did so common themes emerged. Key among these was the consistent inability of PHSO to address the important issues, their bias towards public bodies, their inability to account for their own decisions and the way in which complainants were ignored when they continued to ask for explanations.
Some of the committee members looked shocked at the appalling and arrogant way the Ombudsman handles public complaint. One of the members, Mr. Greg Mulholland MP, stated that he would like to see any evidence of PHSO maladministration. When it was pointed out that we could all supply evidence, he agreed he would accept any evidence presented.
So here is our opportunity to be heard.
As it is not always easy to have your correspondence reach the member of parliament it is intended for, we plan to take all evidence personally to the House of Commons on 16th December 2013 when we attend the next hearing of the inquiry into the Ombudsman service. At this meeting Dame Julie Mellor will be answering questions and we have been told that content from our private meeting will be used to formulate those questions.
Please attend the PASC inquiry meeting on 16th December 2013 (9.30) and show by strength of numbers our concern about the quality of this service.
What type of evidence should we present? Do’s and Don’t s.
- PASC wish to see instances where PHSO have blatantly ignored the evidence put before them.
- Instances where PHSO have favoured a public body where there is no evidence to support their case. ie. bias.
- Firm evidence of collusion between PHSO and NHS trusts or other public bodies. This is a key issue and any data on this should be prioritised.
- Do not put forward supposition if you cannot support your claim with hard evidence. You may well be right, but these issues will only be a distraction.
- Do not write reams and reams even though your case is complex. We want Mr. Mulholland to be able to find the facts quickly. So summarise, stick to the above points and provide the evidence as an appendix.
- It is better for PASC to process a large number of different complaints than to work through a few lengthy ones. If you write too much they may not read it. See example given below.
Make sure your evidence is ready for 16th December then either bring it yourself to the PASC inquiry, pass it to someone you know is attending, or post/email it to me and I will take it for personal transfer.
Contact me at email@example.com
Include a copy for Mr. Oliver Letwin MP. He is also calling for evidence as part of the Cabinet Office investigation into the Ombudsman service. The Cabinet Office controls legislation, so Mr. Letwin is a key player. See details here: phsothefacts.com/news
We were also encouraged to start a pressure group by another member of the committee Mr. Lindsay Roy MP. phsothefacts.com is happy to act as coordinator for this pressure group. Please see join-pressure-group on this site for more information.