Grievance Policy

Any community member or third-party reporter may file a complaint. Reporting parties may file either an informal complaint or a formal grievance. Retaliation is prohibited against a person who files a complaint or grievance. 


Resounding Joy is committed to the principle of equal opportunity including access to facilities. Differences in treatment are prohibited when based on race, creed, color, religion, national origin, age, sex, pregnancy (including childbirth and related conditions), disability, genetic information, status as a U.S. veteran, service in the U.S. military, sexual orientation, gender identity, or associational preferences. This principle must be observed in the internal policies and practices of the organization; specifically program policies, service delivery, and in Resounding Joy’s treatment of clients, volunteers, and its employees. Consistent with state and federal law, reasonable accommodations will be provided to persons with disabilities and to accommodate religious practices. Resounding Joy shall work cooperatively with the community in furthering these principles.

Informal complaints

An informal complaint is a request to reach an informal resolution of the reporting party’s concerns. The procedures for such complaints are designed to be very flexible to address an individual’s situation in the most effective and expeditious manner possible. The responding party normally will not be informed of the reporting party’s action or identity without the consent of the reporting party unless circumstances require. No disciplinary action can be taken against the responding party on the basis of a complaint of which the responding party has not been informed.

An informal complaint can be submitted to the Director of Engagement at, the CEO at, or anonymously via the following Google form: 

Grievance Procedures:

Right to file a grievance: 

  • Every participant has the right to file a grievance.
  • Participants have the right to file a grievance regarding music therapy session content, facility, or staff behavior within 90 days of the session relating to the grievance.
  • Participants have the right to contact the CEO and Founder of Resounding Joy, Barbara Reuer, Phd, MT-BC, at any time to address the status of their grievance filing.  She can be contacted by email at or at 858-457-2200.
  • Participants have the right to be notified in writing about the decision of the grievance within 90 days of filing with the CEO of Resounding Joy.
  • Any participant has the right to file an appeal to the decision made by Resounding Joy regarding the grievance within 30 days of the written decision.
  • Any participant has the right to have an unresolved grievance addressed by the Board Chair or DEI Committee Chair, as appropriate.  This should occur only after Resounding Joy’s Grievance Procedures seen below have been exhausted.

To execute a right to file a grievance a participant must:

  1. Contact the CEO in writing within 90 days of the occurrence.
  2. Include a written testimony of the grievance, including the nature of the grievance with important details like the date, location, staff, or the course content/material related to the grievance.
  3. Provide copies of any evidence related to their participation at the session or event in question or evidence of the actual grievance occurring, if possible.
  4. Agree to be interviewed for any follow-up testimony required or questions from the CEO. Resounding Joy will strive to resolve all grievances within 30 days and maintain the highest level of participant satisfaction possible. 

Therefore, Resounding Joy, Inc. will always execute the following steps in response to a grievance being filed:

  1. Provide a written response within 10 days of the filing of a grievance that the grievance has been received and reviewed.
  2. Provide the participant filing the grievance with the following timeline for the review process:
    1. within 10 days:  notified of receipt and review process begins.
    2. within 20 days:  all parties involved, including the filer, will be contacted for an interview to gather more information, evidence, and testimony as needed.
    3. within 30 days: render a written decision to the participant regarding grievance.
  3. Provide a date and amount of expected refund in the case of justified grievance within 45 days of the original grievance filing.
  4. Provide a list of suggested third party reviewers for the participant to choose in the case an appeal to the decision may be desired.

If Resounding Joy concludes that an informal complaint or grievance is founded, the CEO is responsible for determining whether a sanction is appropriate. Appropriate sanctions may range from verbal reprimand up to and including separation of the responding party from the organization, in accordance with established organization procedures.  Other options for redress may include staff training, changes in program verbiage, or physical access improvements.

Right to file an appeal:

In the event that Resounding Joy rules against a filed grievance, a participant may refer to the following procedures to file an appeal:

  1. Inform the CEO of Resounding Joy of the request for an appeal in writing within 30 days of completion of the initial grievance decision.
  2. Submit a written statement of reasons for appeal including any original or additional evidence to support the grievance.
  3. Agree upon a neutral party arbitrator to review the initial grievance decision and the written appeal.
  4. Provide copies of any appeal-related evidence confirming participation at the event in question, or evidence of the actual grievance occurring when requested by the continuing education director.
  5. Agree to be interviewed by the third-party arbitrator for any follow-up testimony required or questions.

When the initial grievance procedures and appeal processes have been completed, the grievance decision made by the third party arbitrator will be communicated to the CEO of Resounding Joy and the following process will be executed:

  1. Resounding Joy will provide a written statement of the appeal decision.
  2. In cases of justified grievance decision, Resounding Joy will provide a written offer for a monetary refund of fees to the participant within 15 days of the appeal decision.  All written offers shall include the amount and date of distribution of funds returned to the participant.


Resounding Joy treats as confidential information received in connection with the filing, investigation, and resolution of complaints. It is anticipated and expected that the parties to a complaint will observe the same standard of strict confidentiality. This practice is in the best interests of all parties to the complaint. Failure to respect confidentiality may be regarded as retaliation.