Image for the it's OK to Complain! campaign


In the video below, Commissioner Treasure Jennings shares some common myths about what the MHCC does and how we can help, while providing some fact-based answers. Below the video, you can access the resources in the form of content along with related graphics.

You have to be an Australian citizen or permanent resident to make a complaint.

No. Our services are available to anybody who uses a Victorian public mental health service regardless of their visa, residency or citizenship status. We will not share your personal information without your consent, unless required by the law. MHCC services are free and confidential. Read more about our privacy policy here.

Carers can’t contact the MHCC with their concerns.

Yes, they can. Anyone who is concerned about someone’s experience with a public mental health service in Victoria can make a complaint. However, if your complaint is about someone else’s experience the MHCC usually needs to seek that person’s consent to the complaint. We can still provide you with information and support, so please contact us.

We will discuss with you whether:
• the consumer consents to the complaint
• we can deal with the complaint without the consumer’s consent
• there are other options for resolving your concerns.

Find out more about making a complaint about someone else's experiences here.

The MHCC only takes complaints in English.

No, we don’t.

We can:
• receive complaints in most languages
• arrange an interpreter at no cost to you
• arrange a free appointment or call with a National Relay Service interpreter if you have hearing or speech support needs.

Resources on making a complaint in other languages, Easy English and Auslan can be found here.

Speak up – your experience matters!

The MHCC can’t help me with my rights.

At the MHCC, we are guided at all times by the Mental Health Act 2014External Link and its principles, the Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities Act 2006,External Link and other relevant standards and guidelines.
When people contact us, we help them understand and exercise their rights. This includes assisting them to access support and advocate for themselves. For example, we can provide ideas on how to approach a meeting with your treating team.

When assessing a complaint and the best steps to take, we use a rights-based, recovery-oriented approach. Find out more about our rights-based approach.

The MHCC is a system regulator

The MHCC is a statutory complaints body, not a state-wide regulator. We are here to resolve individual complaints that are brought to us by consumers, carers, their family and advocates. It could be something small or something serious.

When we resolve a problem, sometimes we make recommendations which often improve the system for others as well as for the person who made the complaint. Read more about what complaints the MHCC can deal with.

The MHCC can take me off a Compulsory Treatment Order

We’re sorry, we can’t, but we can help you if you’re not happy with aspects of the treatment in a:
• Designated mental health service, including hospital-based, community, residential, specialist and forensic services.
• Publicly funded mental health community support services if they are not funded by the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).

Click here for more information on Victoria’s public mental health system.External Link

If you’re unsure about whether the MHCC can help with your concerns, contact us and one of Resolution Officers will help assess whether we are able to deal with your concerns. If we can't, we will tell you who can and provide you with their contact details.

My complaint can’t change anything

Yes it can. The MHCC has a range of formal and informal processes to respond to, and resolve complaints. We have helped thousands of people have their say and provide feedback to the service on their experience.

Complaints can result in a range of outcomes that can also improve the system. The more we hear, the more we can help. If we can’t help you, we will tell you why and try to find another option for you.

Complaining will make things worse for me

Your right to complain is protected under the Mental Health Act, 2014 (Vic).External Link

If you feel that making a complaint has made things worse for you, or for someone that you care for, then please contact us.

Reviewed 07 December 2022

Was this page helpful?