The Collective Bargaining Agreement provides procedures by which faculty members who feel that their contractual rights have been violated can appeal for a remedy.
Every faculty member has the right to file an individual grievance. However, someone who was not a UFF member when the incident occurred must represent her or himself or retain an attorney. UFF-FAU and its affiliates represent UFF members free of charge in grievances and arbitrations. You have 30 calendar days from a triggering event to file a grievance, so let us know ASAP if you think you might have one, as it takes many days to prepare for filing (CBA 20.8(a)(1)).
If a grievance cannot be resolved through mutual agreement, the next step is to submit it to binding arbitration. UFF retains the sole and exclusive right to invoke arbitration; non-members will not automatically have the right to pursue a remedy beyond the grievance process. If UFF agrees to allow a non-member to proceed to arbitration, the non-member will be responsible for the cost of the arbitration –- typically $2,000 to $4,000 –- and must provide his or her own attorney, the cost of which can exceed $20,000.
If a non-member informs the chapter of an incident, UFF may file a grievance on behalf of the chapter if it is believed to have chapter-wide impact on the enforcement of the Collective Bargaining Agreement; however, that is at the discretion of the chapter. More often than not, the chapter does not represent non-members.
If you feel that your contract rights have been violated, you should contact the UFF-FAU Grievance Chair (see UFF-FAU Executive Council). Note that since correspondence involving an FAU e-mail address is potentially public record we recommend that sensitive communications be carried out using a personal e-mail address.
There are also specialized procedures and a specific form for expedited handling of assignment disputes. See Appendix H of the Contract.
UFF-FAU Grievance/Contract Enforcement Chair:
Doug McGetchin, History