Management Can’t Dictate the Grievance Procedure

Mellonie Freeman 80x80.jpg

It has come to our attention that DCFS HR is trying to create an end run around the grievance process. They’re creating their own electronic version of the grievance form.
When a grievance arises, management wants members to fill out their form and send it directly to HR, instead of filling out the union’s blue sheet and giving it to the first level manager.

Under management’s plan, HR will then determine whether or not the grievance has “merit,” in their opinion, and possibly reject the grievance, without the benefit of using the SEIU 721 Member Connection.
It’s an unacceptable plan.
Our Contract, Our Rights
According to BU 723 MOU, Article 35, Section 2: “‘Grievance’ means a complaint by an employee concerning the interpretation or application of the provisions of this Memorandum of Understanding or the rules and regulations governing personnel practices or working conditions.” Nowhere does it ask for an opinion of management.
Section 3, 2A  of the same article states: “Departmental management has the responsibility to inform the employee of any limitation of the department’s authority to fully resolve the grievance.”
This means management can’t intimidate us to prevent us from filing a grievance. It’s our right to file a grievance. Management can’t tell us whether or not to file a grievance, or if it has merit or what to write on the grievance.
If management is doing this in any department where SEIU 721 members work, tell your Steward and Worksite Organizer. And remember: use the union’s form only to file a grievance.
We don’t want management to determine if our grievances have merit. We don’t want management to give opinions to about our right to file grievances. Anything else undermines the integrity of the process in our contract and puts us at risk.
-Mellonie Freeman
LA County Children’s Social Worker

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