Manejando Agravios

The Seven Tests of Just Cause

One of the main reasons workers join unions is to gain protection against unfair and unjust discipline that employers hand out. Stewards must be ready to handle all sorts of discipline cases, from warnings to suspensions to firings. Stewards must be ready to deal with situations ranging from gross discrimination by the boss on who gets disciplined to union members who sometimes seem to go out of their way to get themselves in trouble.

Step One of the Grievance Procedure

The first steps of the grievance procedure are probably the most important. This is where most of the investigative work is done by the union steward, the union first states and frames its case, and where the employer states their case.  The first two steps of the grievance procedure are where most grievances get settled. Often times “problems” get settled by just having the union steward and the supervisor “talk things out." For that reason, workers sometimes think that grievances are only those problems that go to the final steps of the grievance procedure.

Information Requests

Information Requests


  • To defend the members and the union contract, the union has a legal right to seek information from an employer - and the employer has a legal obligation to provide it as long as the union's request is relevant and not unreasonable.
  • The employer is required to provide relevant information in a variety of circumstances - don't assume that a grievance has to be filed before you can ask!

Step Two of the Grievance Procedure: Putting the Grievance in Writing

Grievance Procedure – Step 2

When an employer denies a grievance after the first step, it is up to the steward to submit a written grievance. If the grievance is questionable, it is best to have the Chief Steward or Union Committee review the facts, and make the decision on whether to proceed with the grievance.

Here are the basic points to remember when writing a grievance.

Investigating Grievances

Investigating Grievances

A member — or members — come to you. They’re mad. Really mad. “It’s’s a violation of the’s illegal...and it’s not right!” You think to yourself, “yeah, this is terrible. I’d better do something.” But what do you do next?