Thursday, January 27

Problems to make an appointment at the Service of Comprehensive Attention to Citizens of the Alicante City Council


The previous appointments in the Alicante City Council are given in a margin of 15 calendar days, where day by day the agenda is opened for the next business day, according to reports from the Consistory. This initiative has been carried out with the aim of avoiding “the picaresque” that occurred before, since “many residents took reservations that later were not produced with the consequent collapse and discomfort for the citizen,” explains Antonio Peral, councilor of Attention to Citizens. In addition, the mayor points out that if many filters have been introduced when making an appointment, it has been in order to avoid abusive and irregular booking of appointments: only one appointment for each ID, for each email and for each IP.

Alberto de Benito, a desperate person from Alicante faced with the impossibility of making an appointment at the Citizen Service Office, decided to file a claim with the Síndic de Greuges denouncing “the disastrous municipal appointment service in Alicante.” The affected person relates how he has been accessing the web daily for several days to make an appointment and calling 010 without receiving a solution. “This is exasperating because all the operators are busy when you call, no matter what time it is. Appointments fly or are very scarce in hours that do not suit you and calls are not answered “, denounces Alberto de Benito.

This newspaper was able to verify the testimony of this neighbor, when trying to contact an operator by calling 010 to request an appointment. HoweverAfter two days and more than half an hour hearing the telephone beep due to the occupation of the operators, the answer was nil.

Lorena Vila is also suffering from this situation. Last June he contacted the Alicante City Council via email in order to update his bank account. “To this day I still have not received a response and I do not know which bank will send me the next receipt,” he says. On the other hand, the affected party indicates that it has also tried on several occasions to contact by telephone for the same purpose. “The operators say there are no appointments available,” he complains.

On the other hand, José Antonio Esperanza is affected by the same situation that we have been narrating. “I’ve been calling 010 for a week and as the minutes go by, your patience runs out,” he says. José Antonio also needs to update his bank account number and has not yet been able to do so. “I am afraid that tomorrow I will receive any letter from the bank in the event of a non-payment due to not having my bank details updated”, reports.

Likewise, the reason why this impossibility is occurring when it comes to answering by phone is given by the summer season, where the hours of attention to the public are reduced by half due to the vacations of the officials, according to the mayor, Antonio Peral. That is why the councilor recommends that they contact the municipal service from 2:00 p.m., since it works uninterruptedly until 6:00 p.m. “In these four hours the pressure of the calls is reduced by half and they will achieve a safe attention”, he says.

«I find it very bad to keep appointments blocked, I need a registration certificate urgently and I can not get it», Says Elisa Álvaro, who for a week has had an alarm set every day at midnight to make an appointment at the municipal service. “By saving work and personnel, they are making people waste a lot of time,” the citizen denounces.

The councilor acknowledges that “in recent weeks the appointment service has suffered some contingency that has slowed down the adjudication of appointments, but in no case beyond 15 days or 20 days, as assigned to the SAIC de Cervantes by telephone or for Seneca, via the internet ”, says Peral.

The Alicante City Council affirms that in recent weeks the number of calls and requests for the end of the voluntary collection period has increased exponentially, receiving more than 600 daily consultations. “We are confident, despite the special circumstances of the summer season, that normality will return to normal in the coming days and that it will be possible to continue serving with the improvements obtained in recent months,” announces Antonio Peral. And, according to the mayor, until 15 days ago the previous appointment had been reduced to less than a week.

As of September 15, the City Council informs that it will open the SAIC of the North zone in the Gastón Castelló Center, which will allow “Reduce the appointment for registration and municipal procedures to just three or four days.”

What’s more, has launched the first social Cyberkiosk, with which they intend to serve all citizens in real time, with natural language, facilitating the resolution of their requests and procedures and thus end the digital divide and waiting lists.


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