What is a grievance?

Your Union contract will spell out what is a grievance and how grievances are processed. The process usually includes several steps and is called the “grievance procedure.”

What is the purpose of the grievance procedure?

  • To enforce the contract
  • To interpret the meaning and intent of the contract
  • To settle workplace problems in a systematic way
  • To help to establish and protect workers’ rights
  • To give workers a voice on the job by providing them with an opportunity to tell their side of the story
  • To promote workplace harmony

If a member files a grievance with his or her Union Representative, the first step is to try to resolve the situation directly with management. If it is not resolved at that time, the next step is to follow the grievance procedures as stated in the Union contract. This may, in some cases, lead to a final step called arbitration where the decision is final and cannot be appealed by either the union or management.