Complaints Procedure

We take all complaints seriously as they provide us with opportunities to improve and maintain the high standards we strive to achieve. We recognise that we sometimes get things wrong. Your feedback will help us resolve mistakes faster and learn how we can do things better to improve quality and service user satisfaction.

Our Complaints Procedure is available to those who use our SeafarerHelp services including those affected by our promotional materials.

SeafarerHelp will respect your confidentiality and keep your complaint confidential. Any information about the complaint will usually only be shared with those who need to know in order to help resolve it.

We will endeavour to resolve your complaints as promptly and amicably as possible.

How to raise a complaint

SeafarerHelp is operated by the International Seafarers Welfare and Assistance Network (ISWAN), a registered charity in England and Wales.

If you have a complaint about the service that you have received from our SeafarerHelp team or if you have been affected by any SeafarerHelp promotional materials, you should contact the ISWAN Head of Operations and clearly state that you are making a complaint. You will need to explain exactly what your complaint is and what you would like to be done to resolve it, if it is upheld. Contact can be made by email, telephone or by letter direct to the ISWAN Head of Operations. The current Head of Operations is Ray Barker and his email address is If you wish to make a complaint by telephone on +44 207 323 2737, state that you want to make a complaint and request a call back. Please note that although our phone is answered 24 hours per day, the Head of Operations normally works Monday to Friday and so you may have to give a date and time that you can be contacted.

The Head of Operations will acknowledge receipt of your complaint and investigate it. The Head of Operations will provide an initial response within 10 days of receiving it.

Within 20 days from the date the Head of Operations acknowledged receipt of your complaint, you will receive either: a) a full response which adequately addresses the complaint; or b) an explanation why the Head of Operations is not yet in a position to resolve the complaint and will indicate when you will receive a full response.

We expect to be able to resolve most complaints within 20 days from the date we have acknowledged receipt. However, in exceptional circumstances e.g. when we need to conduct a more in-depth investigation or when we have to rely on information provided by others who are overseas we may not be able to meet that deadline.


If you feel that the response the Head of Operations makes to your complaint has not adequately addressed the issues you raised you can appeal to the ISWAN Executive Director using the same contact methods as explained previously. Appeals must be made within 28 days of the Head of Operations response to your complaint.

The current ISWAN Executive Director is Roger Harris. His email address is

The Executive Director will acknowledge receipt of the appeal and provide an initial response within 10 days of receiving it.

The Executive Director will resolve the appeal within 30 days of acknowledging receipt of it.