All kinesiologists are expected to provide safe and ethical care and to practise according to the College's standards. If you have a concern that a kinesiologist may have acted inappropriately, you should contact the College. Contact the Director, Professional Conduct via email or at (416) 961-7000 ext. 104.
One of the ways that the College protects the public is by providing a clear, straightforward method to submit a complaint about a kinesiologist. If you are concerned about the conduct or practice of a kinesiologist, you have the right to submit a complaint to the College. The information below will help you do that and better understand the complaints process.
To submit a complaint, you may complete the complaints form (below) and send it to the College by email, regular mail or fax (contact information below). You may also submit a recorded complaint (e.g. audio or video). The complaint, where possible, should include the name of the member, list any relevant dates and provide some basic details of the concern/complaint.
Who can make a complaint?
Anyone can submit a complaint about a kinesiologist's practice or conduct. The College cannot address anonymous complaints.
How can I submit a complaint?
Complaints must be received in a recorded format. Recorded means your complaint can be written or in an audio or video format. College staff cannot record your complaint over the phone. You can have another person assist you in submitting a complaint.
To file a complaint, please complete the Complaints Form.
You may submit it by:
Registrar c/o Professional Conduct Department
College of Kinesiologists of Ontario
160 Bloor Street East, Suite 1402
Toronto, ON M4W 1B9
Fax: (416) 961-7009
What information do I need to provide?
A complaint must contain your full name and contact information. The complaint should identify the kinesiologist (the member). You can find information on a member by using the Public Register of Kinesiologists. If you are still unsure about their identity, College staff can assist you.
You should provide a description of the behaviour, action or inaction you are concerned about, and include as much detail as possible about time and location.
Are there matters the College can’t address?
The College can't address any of the following:
- Matters that have been dealt with by another agency, such as the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB).
- Matters that involve a member’s behaviour as a spouse, parent, neighbour or business partner, unless the behaviour would be considered by the profession or the public to be conduct unbecoming.
- Complaints regarding management of a facility, unless the member is the owner and/or operator of the facility and has a professional duty to establish or maintain systems, such as ensuring confidentiality of health records.
- Complaints or concerns that the College may deem to be frivolous and/or vexatious. These might include complaints that are considered retaliatory or an abuse of process.
When can a complaint be made?
A complaint may be made at any time. However, you are encouraged to make your concerns known as soon as possible so that the member has the opportunity to respond more accurately and to ensure that any evidence is current. You may withdraw your complaint at any time. However, if the Inquiries, Complaints and Reports Committee (ICRC- more information below) believes that the complaint is serious, they may continue the investigation.
What happens after I submit my complaint?
Once a complaint is submitted, you will be notified of receipt within 14 days and you will be provided with information on the complaints process. The kinesiologist will also receive notice and a copy of the complaint. Only in rare circumstances, if there is a risk of harm to an individual, would a copy of the complaint not be provided to the kinesiologist. The kinesiologist is given 30 days to respond to the complaint. While not required, kinesiologists are encouraged to respond in order to demonstrate accountability.
A panel of ICRC members will be selected by the Committee chair to address the matter. The panel will include kinesiologists and members of the public. The panel directs the investigation, often with the assistance of College staff, and disposes of the complaint when they are satisfied that the investigation is complete or a resolution has been achieved.
Subject to certain limitations, the College is required to make a decision on a complaint within 150 days. If the 150 day time limit has passed, the College will notify you and the kinesiologist, explaining the reasons for the delay and the expected time in which the complaint will be decided.
Some complaints may be formally investigated. The ICRC can appoint an investigator who has authority to inspect and obtain documents and call witnesses. An investigator may do any of, but is not limited to, the following:
- Seek clarification from the complainant and the kinesiologist(s).
- Inspect the kinesiologist’s practice setting.
- Interview and obtain statements from witnesses.
- Inspect and/or obtain copies of documents and/or health records.
- Approach the kinesiologist’s other patients/clients or colleagues.
During an investigation, if the complainant is the patient/client, their personal health information can be disclosed or their health record examined by College staff and the ICRC. All staff, investigators and the ICRC members involved in the process are required to keep such information confidential.
Any prior decisions of the ICRC and/or Discipline Committee involving the kinesiologist's practice will also be provided to the ICRC for review. The investigator and/or College staff are not appointed to find fault or make recommendations. An investigation seeks to obtain all relevant information, whether it supports the kinesiologist or the complainant, and to provide this to the ICRC. College staff cannot provide advice to a complainant or to a kinesiologist, but will provide explanation as to the process.
When the ICRC is satisfied that the investigation is complete, it will meet to decide the matter.
Alternative Dispute Resolution
A complaint may be of a nature that is suitable for alternative dispute resolution (ADR). ADR is voluntary and any agreement reached between you and the kinesiologist is subject to approval by the ICRC. The goal of the College in offering this option is to provide the kinesiologist with the opportunity to reflect and improve on his/her practice. It is not a process that searches to determine what happened or to lay blame. It is designed to promote the standards of the profession. ADR is a full and final resolution of the complaint.
What are the outcomes of an investigation?
Once the ICRC is satisfied that the investigation is complete, the panel can do any one of the following:
- Refer the matter to the College’s Discipline Committee. A matter warrants referral to Discipline if the concerns are serious enough and there is strong evidence to suggest that the member may have committed an act of professional misconduct, and/or maybe be incompetent.
- Refer the matter to another panel of the ICRC if it is apparent that the member may be suffering from a health condition or disorder that is affecting his or her ability to practise.
- Issue a caution-in-person to the kinesiologist. The kinesiologist appears before the panel and the panel expresses its concerns about the kinesiologist’s practice. The kinesiologist is given the opportunity to discuss changes that he or she will make to avoid a similar incident.
- Require the kinesiologist to complete a specified continuing education or remediation program (SCERP). These remedial courses are designed to address concerns identified in the complaint.
- Issue written advice with or without recommendations.
- Enter into an agreed upon undertaking with the kinesiologist that outlines various things he/she must do.
- Decide that no further action is required.
The panel is required to provide written reasons for its decision and to provide these to the complainant and the kinesiologist.
What can the ICRC not do?
The ICRC is not a fact-finding committee. It does not conduct hearings in which findings of guilt or innocence are made, nor can it make findings of credibility. The ICRC cannot:
- Award complainants any monetary compensation or other compensation.
- Require the kinesiologist to apologize to the complainant.
- Require another administrative body or organization to change a decision regarding the subject matter of the complaint (e.g. an insurance company changing the provision of benefits).
- Require an employer to discipline a kinesiologist.
Both the complainant and the kinesiologist have the right to appeal the ICRC's decision to the Health Professions Appeal and Review Board if they feel the investigation was inadequate or the decision was unreasonable. Information on how to file an appeal is provided to the parties.