Grievances have long been the accepted method of resolving issues that arise under collective bargaining agreements. Each University labor agreement contains a grievance procedure establishing parameters for dialogue to systematically and professionally address differences of contract application or interpretation. Grievance procedure details can be found in the labor contract.
Grievances may be initiated by an employee, group of employees, a union representative, or the University. A grievance must be presented to the supervisor or, in some cases, the next appropriate level of management, within thirty (30) days of the incident being grieved. An initial meeting to discuss the grievance is scheduled by the supervisor and attended by a Human Resources Consultant, grievant, and union representative. Following the meeting, the supervisor will respond to the grievance in accordance with the timeline established in the contract.
If the matter is not resolved satisfactorily at the initial step, the grievance may be pursued to the next level as outlined in the contract. At this review level, Labor Relations is responsible for scheduling the parties to meet and for the issuance of a response.
Grievances that are not resolved during the internal review steps may be subject to mediation or arbitration. While mediation is not a required step it may be a helpful means to explore resolution short of arbitration. Mediation is facilitated by a neutral third party who works with the University and union to identify a mutually acceptable resolution.
If mediation fails to achieve a resolution, the matter may be subject to arbitration. At this step the University and union present their respective cases at a hearing administered by the arbitrator. The arbitrator’s decision is final and binding on both parties.