The Grievance Procedure
Grievance types: individual, group and policy
The Public Service Labour Relations Act (PSLRA) provides for three types of grievances: individual, group and policy.
Grievances of this type are filed by individual employees. Such cases can deal with issues related to the collective agreement, discipline and human rights, as well as other matters affecting the employee concerned.
Some individual grievances can be referred to an independent third party (an adjudicator) for a binding decision, others cannot. Section 209 of the PSLRA sets out which kinds of grievances can be brought before an adjudicator. However, the decision to refer to adjudication rests with the bargaining agent (PSAC).
Group grievances are filed by a “group of employees” rather than by an individual employee. Grievances of this type – formerly known as “et al” – are used in situations where a group of employees in the same department or agency face the same problem. The problem must relate to the interpretation or application of the collective agreement. To proceed with a grievance of this type, the union must obtain the consent of each of the employees concerned. Three documents are required, the grievance form, a consent to be represented form, and a signature form that must be signed by all employees that are party to the grievance.
Grievances of this type may be referred to adjudication.
For more information about group grievances, members should contact their Local or a Union Services Officer at the UNDE National Office.
Both the employer and the union can file policy grievances. These grievances must relate to an interpretation or application of the collective agreement. Only the President of the Public Service Alliance of Canada can file and sign a policy grievance on behalf of the union. If a member(s) feel that they have an issue that may warrant filing a policy grievance, they should contact their Local or their Union Services Officer at the UNDE National Office.
A one-level process, submitted on an individual grievance form, filed to contest a classification decision. Classification grievances are filed at the Local level and immediately transmitted to UNDE National Office and represented only at the national level by a UNDE staff member.
For more information and assistance on classification grievances, members should contact their Local or the Union Services Officer responsible for classification grievances.