In a contemporary employee-employer situation, grievances withregard to violation of the law or violation of a collectivebargaining agreement arise. In such instances, there are proceduresthat are set up in the collective agreement or by the employerthrough which aggrieved employees must follow in resolving theirgrievances (Bennett & Kaufman, 2012). A grievance procedure isextremely important since it covers the matters that the procedurecan resolve, the stages of resolving the issue at hand, and thepeople involved in resolving the issue at hand. In every labor unioncontract, a grievance procedure is essential in order to ensure thatemployee grievances are addressed effectively and fairly (Holley etal., 2012).
Employees of the US airways have a union that has established acontract or collective agreement with the employer that caters forthe settlement of employees’ disputes. AFA (Association of FlightAttendants) is the union that US airways employees subscribe to andthe union is responsible for addressing the grievances of anyemployee who is a member. The collective agreement between this unionand the company has established procedures and the people whoparticipate in dispute resolution (IRLE Library, 2014).
For the purpose of resolving any employee dispute, the US airwayshas established the US Airways, Inc. Flight Attendants’ SystemBoard of Adjustment, which is commonly referred to us the ‘board’.This is a team of five individuals, who are selected from the union,the company and one other individual who is impartial (IRLE Library,2014). There are two members from the union, two member from thecompany and a fifth impartial member who comprise the board. Themembers from the union and the company can be replaced. However, suchchange of any member must be notified to the board through writing.
Any complaint by an employee who subscribes to the union is handledby this board. However, the boarded is limited on the complaints thatit can handle. The board can only handle matters that are covered bythe Flight Attendants’ Agreement and the Company. The board canalso cover matters relating to the interpretation of the FlightAttendants Agreement (IRLE Library, 2014). The board does not havejurisdiction over hours of work, working conditions or compensationrates that the parties hereto have agreed.
Complaints are lodged to the board through the chairperson of theassociation. The disputes are critically looked into and settled onlyif such a case has not been addressed before the board. Whensubmissions for the complaint are received by the chairperson of theboard, a date for the hearing is set. The date is mainly during thenest general meeting for the board. The matter can also be regardedas urgent depending on the nature of the complaint. In such aninstance, an earlier date for the hearing can be set. The employee oremployees can appear in person or can be represented by a person theyappoint (IRLE Library, 2014). The company can also be represented bya person whom it appoints. Witnesses can also be allowed into thecase for prudent determination. The decision arrived at must besupported by majority. The decision of the board is final and bothparties must abide.
A grievance procedure is extremely helpful to the management of thecompany. It enables the company to deal with complaints from thevarious employees. The procedure sets out the steps and the issuesthat employees can bring before the board. The procedure is alsobeneficial to the management in that it enables the company tocontinue with its operations while the board deals with employeecomplaints. However, the procedure can be extremely time consuming tothe management. The management has the responsibility of sending arepresentative to the board for the hearing. This is not only timeconsuming, but also costly.
Bennett, J. T., & Kaufman, B. E. (2012). What do unionsdo? A twenty-year perspective. New Brunswick, N.J: TransactionPublishers.
Holley, W. H., Jennings, K. M., & Wolters, R. S. (2012). Thelabor relations process. Mason, OH: South-Western CengageLearning.
IRLE Library (Institute for Research on Labor and Employment).(2014). Labor Contracts, by Union Name, AFA (Association ofFlight Attendants). Retrieved from: http://www.irle.berkeley.edu/library/lcUnion.html