ACT Complaints Policy

The ACT Alliance as a membership-based organisation is committed to providing high-quality humanitarian, development and advocacy programmes and to working in an open and accountable way.  The alliance was founded with clear respect for the independence of its members. At the same time, the ACT Alliance has a vested and collective interest in the performance of individual members or groups of members.

In an effort to achieve high quality, ACT strives to meet and even surpass the expectations of its stakeholders, i.e., ACT members and their partners, communities with whom ACT members work, donors, supporters and the public. There may however, be occasions when ACT does not meet the reasonable expectations of all stakeholders at all times. ACT stakeholders have a right to raise a concern, give feedback and if necessary lodge a complaint when this occurs.

The ACT Alliance promotes accountable and transparent ways of working with all stakeholders. It encourages its members and the secretariat to address staff and stakeholder concerns quickly and effectively so that issues are resolved to the satisfaction of the concerned person and do not progress to the level of a complaint. Programme level concerns should be raised and discussed with responsible employees as close to the activity as possible.


The purpose of the ACT Complaints Policy is to:

  • recognise, promote and protect ACT stakeholder rights, including the right to raise a concern and/or complain about breaches or non-compliance to the ACT Alliance Code of Conduct and or the Code of Good Practice;
  • set out roles, responsibilities and timeframes on handling of complaints and provide clear policy guidance for responding to and resolving complaints;
  • ensure a consistent mechanism to hold ACT members,  staff of members and the secretariat staff accountable in terms of their behaviour and compliance with ACT standards and policies;
  • provide a mechanism for stakeholders to raise a concern or complaint about the work of an ACT member if that member does not have its own complaints policy in place;
  • ensure that ACT learns from all situations in order to strive for high quality and continuous improvement in ACT’s humanitarian, development and advocacy work;
  • increase the level of stakeholder satisfaction with the work of the ACT Alliance; and
  • learn from and improve the work of the ACT Alliance.

The ACT “Complaints Handling and Investigations Guidelines” provide additional, specific and complementary guidance to ACT members and the ACT secretariat on the key principles underpinning complaints handling and outline the minimum standards for the establishment of complaints handling mechanisms within their own organisations and programmes.  These additional guidelines support the implementation of this policy.

The ACT Alliance Complaints Policy is available in English, French and Spanish.




(ACT Policy)