Article 14 : grievances
A grievance is defined as any dispute relating to the interpretation, application, administration or alleged violation of this Agreement.
An individual grievance is presented by or in the name of an employee.
Where an employee presenting a grievance at the first level does not wish to be accompanied by an employees' representative, he makes this known by signing the form agreed upon by the parties and provided for this purpose. A copy of this form is sent immediately to the Institute.
A group grievance covers an identical dispute and seeks the same redress for employees of the same faculty or department. Where the employees involved do not have the same supervisor, the grievance is presented immediately at the second level. The grievance is accompanied by a list of the employees who are a party to the grievance and their signatures authorizing the presentation of the group grievance on their behalf. In this case, one of the employees in the group is designated by the Institute to accompany the Institute during discussions at the various levels of this procedure.
A policy grievance is one which is presented by the Institute or by the University and raises a question concerning the general application or interpretation of the Agreement. In this case, the grievance is presented immediately at the second level, which is to say to the HR Client Advisory Services, Labour Relations sector, or to the Institute.
No employee or Institute representative belonging to the bargaining unit will suffer reprisals for presenting a grievance.
The parties acknowledge that grievances are to be resolved promptly and undertake to act diligently to do so.
The Institute has carriage of all grievances at Level Two (2) of the grievance procedure and thereafter.
14.2 Dispute resolution
- Informal discussion:
Before initiating a grievance, an employee, alone or accompanied by a representative from the Institute, may attempt to resolve any dispute during an informal encounter with his immediate superior. From the perspective of prompt dispute resolution, the parties acknowledge that, although not mandatory, informal discussions between employees and their supervisors may often prove useful.
- First level
- Should the parties fail to reach an understanding at the informal discussion stage or if no informal discussion takes place, the employee, or the Institute through its representative, may present a grievance in writing to the University's authorized representative, i.e., the dean of the faculty or the director of the department involved, and send a copy to the HR Client Advisory Services, Labour Relations sector.
- The grievance briefly sets out the dispute and the redress demanded and is presented no later than whichever date occurs last: the fifteenth (15th) working day following the incident giving rise to the grievance or the fifteenth (15th) working day after the employee first learned of the events giving rise to the grievance.
- Recourse to the informal discussion provided for in 14.2 a) stops the clock on the aforementioned fifteen (15) working days time limit; the countdown begins again only after a written decision is issued by the immediate supervisor following this informal discussion, or no later than five (5) days after this discussion.
- Within ten (10) working days following the presentation of the grievance, the University's representative, alone or accompanied by a representative from HR Client Advisory Services, Labour Relations sector, meets with the employee and his representative if so desired, and try to resolve the grievance.
- The University's authorized representative issues a written decision that is to be sent to the other party and his representative within fifteen (15) working days of receiving the grievance.
- Second level:
- Should the Parties fail to resolve the grievance at the first level, the employee's representative may submit the grievance to the Principal Negotiator, HR Client Advisory Services within the fifteen (15) working days following the reply by the University's authorized representative, or in the absence of such reply, following the expiration of the time limit for replying.
- The Principal Negotiator, HR Client Advisory Services or his authorized representative meets with the employee's representative in the company of the employee at the second level within ten (10) working days of receiving the second-level grievance and attempts to resolve the grievance. The Principal Negotiator, HR Client Advisory Services, or his authorized representative issues a written decision that is to be sent to the Institute with a copy to the employee within fifteen (15) working days of the meeting provided for in the preceding paragraph.
- Referral to arbitration: Should the Parties fail to resolve the grievance at the second level, the Institute informs the Labour Relations sector in writing of its intent to refer the grievance to arbitration within sixty (60) days of the reply from the Principal Negotiator, HR Client Advisory Services, or in the absence of a reply, on expiration of the time limit for responding. Where the grievance has been presented by the University, its authorized representative has the same time limit for informing the Institute of its intent to refer the grievance to arbitration.
14.3 Abridged Procedure
Any grievance challenging a layoff, dismissal or suspension without pay is presented directly at the second level provided in 14.2 within thirty (30) days of the action being challenged.
14.4 Extension of Time Limits
- The time limits and levels provided in this article are mandatory unless mutually extended or substituted in writing by the University and the Institute, or unless it is expressly agreed to proceed directly to a specific level.
- Where the grievance is presented by the University, the same time limits provided in Article 14 for the Institute and the employees applies to the University, and the time limits available to the University also applies to the Institute. If at any time the University's representatives fail to respect the time limits stipulated in this Agreement, the Institute and the person who presented the grievance may proceed to the next level or refer it to arbitration if need be.
- Should the employee or the Institute or the University fail to respect the time limits incumbent upon them as set out in this Agreement, or should a reply not be received within the stipulated time limits, the grievance is deemed abandoned. In the event of disagreement as to whether the Article 14 time limits were respected, an arbitrator appointed in accordance with Article 15 is charged with settling this new dispute in consideration of the circumstances surrounding the presumed failure to respect these time limits.
14.5 Notwithstanding the aforementioned procedure, the Parties may meet with each other at any time in the aim of finding a satisfactory solution to the grievance.