Getting to know the Grievance Committee
As a new or continuing member of the Grievance Committee or Executive Committee, you need to be familiar with the material provided here in the documents “A Guide for the Grievance Committee” and “Grievance Procedures in the University Environment: A Manual for Case Officers of the StFXAUT Grievance Committee” which you may print or view by clicking on the appropriate link below, if you have not already done so. These documents will give you the knowledge of the grievance handling process and necessary background information on grievances. Feel free to discuss any issues in any of these documents with other grievance officers if you have any questions.
The CAUT website has a database of closed arbitration cases from universities across Canada. When you are handling a case it could be very useful to check on similar cases on the website. You will need a password to gain access and you should request it from the StFXAUT President or a Grievance Officer who has the password. The direct website is http://www.caut.ca/arbitration/ or go to the website http://www.caut.ca and click on Members Only and you will see a link to the database close to the bottom of the page.
In all your work in handling complaints or grievances from our members, it is imperative to always remember and act out our commitment to strict confidentiality, duty of fair representation, and conflict of interest and bias prevention.
If you are a case leader, it will be very helpful if you organize any case material in a binder or folder. The binder or folder may be obtained from the Chief Grievance Officer or the StFXAUT Administrative Assistant. The case documents should be summarized and organized on the Grievance Officer Fact Sheet (see below). In fact these Grievance Officer Fact Sheets may be distributed to Grievance Officers to give them background information before meeting to discuss the case. It is also essential to provide the Chief Grievance Officer with information to update the grievance stages time limits. The Chief Grievance Officer will put all such information in an Excel spreadsheet.
The Committee holds two kinds of meetings. General meetings to discuss general grievance matters and initially most of this kind of meetings were used to discuss the role and function, policies and procedures for the Committee. The approved minutes of past general meetings are provided below. Note that the first digit in the file name represents the number of the meeting with numbering occurring within period from AGM to AGM. Special meetings take place to hear and/or to discuss a case. The resulting minutes are strictly confidential and will not be provided here.
It is strongly recommended that e-mail communications of confidential or sensitive material regrading complaints or grievances should be done using dedicated off campus e-mail accounts. Please consider obtaining such an account as soon as possible.
Grievance Committee Resources
A Guide for the Grievance Committee: REVISED JUNE 20, 2009.This is easy reading and recommended to be a first read.
Grievance Officers and Contact Information for STFXAUT
Grievance Procedures in the University Environment: A Manual for Case Officers of the StFXAUT Grievance Committee: REVISED JUNE 20, 2009. Inserted the Appendix G. This is a must read.
General Meeting Minutes: The minutes for general meetings are available for easy reference.
What does a grievance look like? Here are the forms or sample letters:
Grievance Officer Fact Sheet: For consistency, we will use this form until Committee makes necessary changes. Use this form to take complaints or grievances.
Template for Submitting Grievances: For consistency, we will use this form until Committee makes necessary changes. For Step 2 submissions you should review the Collective Agreement so you know what items you should attach to the Grievance Form.
Template for Receipting Correspondence: For consistency, we will use this form until Committee makes necessary changes.
Template for Submitting Arbitration Notice: For consistency, we will use this form until Committee makes necessary changes.
Other Resources – The Workshop Binder
A good document to read. If you have participated in a CAUT Grievance Handling Workshop in the past then you most likely have a copy of this binder. If you do not have a copy of the binder, then please contact the Administrative Asisstant at the StFXAUT office to request a copy. If you have not participated in a CAUT Grievance Handling Workshop you should consider doing so.
Past Participants of CAUT Grievance Handling Workshop: This is listing of CAUT Grievance Handling Workshop Participants in 2007, 2009
Here are some useful documents which you should read sometime
LUFA Grievance Policy: Laurentian University Faculty Association Grievance Ploicy Paper. Good writeup on issues of conflict of interest and confidentiality.
Duty_of_Fair_Representation: This explains duty of fair representation.
Western Grievance Manual-nov24- 07: The University of Western Ontario Grievance Handling Manual. Well written document which has been adapted to StFXAUT.
The Principles of Natural Justice: This is a Canadian Common Law document. It describes the rules of natural justice.