Complaints Policy

The Community Broadcasting Foundation (CBF) is an independent non-profit funding agency. The CBF’s purpose is to solicit and disburse funds for the development of the community broadcasting sector in an ethical and transparent manner. Like the sector it serves, the CBF is largely volunteer-driven.

The CBF’s grant processes are based on peer group assessment of grant applications by volunteers with relevant community broadcasting experience (Grant Assessor Team) who, as Assessor Team members, or as members of CBF Grants Advisory Committees provide recommendations on funding allocation and funding policy to the CBF Board. CBF volunteers are appointed by the CBF Board through a published nomination process.

The CBF operates with limited funds sourced mainly from the Australian Government. Funding is allocated within funding parameters and conditions established by its funding providers and according to the priorities and processes published in the CBF’s grant guidelines.

CBF staff expect to be treated with respect and dignity. And in turn, people interacting with the CBF will be offered the same. If staff and volunteers are subjected to abusive or aggressive behaviour over the telephone, the caller will be informed of our policy and the call may be terminated.

Scope of Policy
The CBF’s complaints process is not an appeals process against funding decisions that have been arrived at through proper process. A grant decision will only be reviewed through this Complaints Policy if it is determined that proper process has not been followed.

If you wish to provide feedback to the CBF rather than make a complaint, please contact us.

If you wish make a whistleblower disclosure, please refer to our Whistleblower Policy.

If you wish to advise us of an alleged fraud, please refer to our Fraud Control Plan.

1. What does this complaints policy cover?

Complaints to the CBF can be made in relation to:

  • The level, quality or timeliness of the services provided by the CBF.
  • Adherence to proper process in the CBF grant assessment process and the nomination and appointment process for CBF volunteers.
  • Compliance with the provisions of relevant CBF Grant Guidelines or the terms of a CBF Grant Agreement.

2. How can I make a complaint?

a. Informal verbal complaints
Many complaints can be resolved informally and efficiently via personal contact. The CBF asks that you first make a verbal complaint by raising the issue with the appropriate CBF staff member. This is particularly important where your complaint relates to the level or quality of service provided by a particular staff member. It makes them aware of the issue and allows them to address it.

Contact details for all CBF Support Team members are available at team. If you believe that the person that you initially dealt with is unable to assist you, please contact the CBF’s Chief Executive Officer.

b. Formal written complaints
If you are not satisfied with the response provided to your verbal complaint, you may wish to lodge a formal written complaint.

3. Making a formal complaint

a. Formal complaints

Formal complaints must:

  • Be made in writing and lodged with the CBF either via mail or e-mail.
  • Be from an identified individual or organisation. The CBF does not act on anonymous complaints.
  • Provide specific details about the nature of your complaint.
  • Provide mail, telephone and (where available) e-mail contact details.

Identify whether there are any aspects of the complaint that you wish to be treated as confidential. If confidentiality is requested with regard to the matter as a whole, please ensure that mailed complaints are marked clearly on the envelope as ‘Confidential’. Emailed complaints should include the words ‘Confidential Complaint’ in the subject box.

Please note that with respect to formal complaints, confidentiality cannot be accorded in any manner that restricts the ability of the CBF’s Chief Executive Officer or President to report to the CBF Board; the CBF to fulfil its obligations to the Australian Government, regulatory bodies such as the Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC) and the Australian Charity and Not-For-Profit Commission (ACNC); or prevents the CBF from meeting its obligations under law.
Formal complaints by mail must be addressed to:

The President
Community Broadcasting Foundation
Level 7, 369 Royal Parade
Parkville, Victoria, 3056

Or via e-mail to

b. How will I know that my complaint has been received?
All formal complaints will be acknowledged by mail, telephone or email within one week of receipt.

c. How will my complaint be dealt with?
A written response to your formal complaint will be provided by mail or e-mail within one month of receipt. In the event that this time-frame cannot be complied with, the reasons for the delay and an expected response time will be communicated in writing.
In some cases, further information may be requested from you or a meeting or teleconference arranged to discuss your complaint, prior to a written response being provided.

In the event that the CBF President is the subject of the complaint, the President will declare a conflict of interest and the matter will be dealt with by the CBF’s Vice-President.

Approved by the CBF Board on 20 May 2016, revised 1 June 2018 and 16 August 2019. Download the CBF Complaints Policy (PDF, 137KB)

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