Grievances for Management A&P, General A&P and Classified Employees
Policy Number: 146
Filing a grievance
All classified, management administrative and professional, and general administrative and professional employees.
- Date Reviewed:
- February 2019
- Responsible Office:
- Human Resources and Office of the Executive Vice-President and Chief Academic Officer
- Responsible Executive:
- Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer; Executive Vice-President and Chief Academic Officer
I. POLICY AND GENERAL STATEMENT
The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (“university”) encourages fair, efficient and equitable solutions for problems arising out of the employment relationship. The university strongly recommends that individuals experiencing problems attempt to resolve them informally before exercising the grievance process. Employees should discuss the concerns openly with the individual with whom the problem exists.
Upon separation of an employee from the university, dispute resolution and grievance processes end.
All classified, management administrative and professional (A&P), and general A&P employees are covered by this policy, including those who are within their probationary period, and those with temporary and casual appointments. Faculty members (including those holding an academic administrative and professional position) should consult HOOP 127, Faculty Grievances. Postdoctoral fellows should consult HOOP 123, Grievances: Postdoctoral Research Fellows.
This policy covers complaints concerning wages, hours of work, working conditions, performance evaluations, merit raises, job assignments, reprimands, or the interpretation or application of a rule, regulation, or policy.
This policy does not apply to complaints from employees regarding suspension without pay, demotion or termination of employment due to disciplinary action. Appeals and other matters regarding suspension without pay, demotion or termination resulting from disciplinary action will be handled within the process described in HOOP 187, Discipline and Dismissal of Classified Employees or HOOP 153, Termination of Employment: Administrative and Professional, as appropriate. If the grievance concerns a reduction in force, the provisions of HOOP 52, Reductions in Force apply.
Complaints regarding harassment or discrimination shall be addressed under the procedures in HOOP 183, Nondiscrimination, Anti-Harassment and Equal Opportunity and HOOP 59, Prohibition of Sexual Harassment & Sexual Misconduct.
B. RETALIATION AND CONFIDENTIALITY
No employee will be penalized or disciplined for filing a grievance or for aiding another employee in the presentation of a grievance. Employees who believe they have been penalized or disciplined for doing so should follow the procedures in HOOP 108, Protection from Retaliation. Acts or threats of retaliation in response to grievances may subject the person retaliating to disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment, in accordance with HOOP 108, Protection from Retaliation. Persons filing grievances with reckless disregard for the truth or in willful ignorance of the facts are excluded from protection and may be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment.
A. INFORMAL RESOLUTION
The university encourages communication between supervisors and employees in order to resolve workplace concerns promptly. For classified and management A&P employees, Employee Relations Advisors are available to assist in an informal resolution. For general A&P employees, consult the appropriate dean’s office. If an employee has been unsuccessful in informally resolving concerns directly with his/her supervisor or manager, the employee may proceed directly to the grievance procedure.
Parties to a grievance concerning classified or management A&P employees are strongly encouraged to contact an Employee Relations Advisor in Human Resources at any point in the grievance process for guidance regarding the process. An Employee Relations Advisor must be copied on any correspondence that is part of the grievance process. Parties to grievances concerning general A&P employees may seek assistance from the Office of the Executive Vice President and Chief Academic Officer.
Calculation of calendar days does not include holidays or "skeleton crew" days indicated on the published university calendar. For grievances concerning classified or management A&P employees, a time limit may be extended by the Chief Human Resources Officer or designee for good cause determined in the sole discretion of the Chief Human Resources Officer or designee. For grievances concerning general A&P employees, a time limit may be extended by the Executive Vice-President and Chief Academic Officer (“EVP/CAO”) or designee for good cause determined in the sole discretion of the EVP/CAO or designee.
1. Formal Grievance
To initiate a formal grievance, the employee shall present the grievance in writing to his or her supervisor within seven calendar days from the date of the action that is the subject of the grievance. The employee's statement of complaint must include the employee's recommendation(s) for resolution of the grievance. Relevant documents or any other information pertinent to the matter should also be provided. Once the grievance has been committed to writing, it cannot be changed.
If an employee’s immediate supervisor is the subject of the grievance, the employee may file the grievance in writing with the department head. If the subject of the grievance is an individual above the employee’s immediate supervisor, refer to the levels of review listed in Section II.B.2 to determine where the grievance should be filed. The employee should consult with Human Resources (classified and management A&P) or the Office of the EVP/CAO (general A&P) for further guidance if needed.
Immediate supervisors and other recipients of a grievance must respond to the employee in writing within seven calendar days of receipt of the grievance. If an employee files a grievance at a level higher than the one specified in this policy, the grievance will be returned to the appropriate level for review.
2. Review of Grievance
If the grievance is not satisfactorily resolved by the administrator or if the employee does not receive a response in accordance with the timelines outlined in this policy, the employee may submit a written response stating why the decision is unacceptable to the following persons in the order listed:
- department head;
- appropriate dean or senior management staff member;
- Senior Executive Vice President, Chief Operating Officer or designee for classified and management A&P employees; EVP/CAO or designee for general A&P employees.
The employee’s grievance to the next level must be filed with the appropriate next higher level of management within seven calendar days of 1) receipt by the employee of the response or 2) the deadline for response if no response was received. The employee’s grievance to the next level must be in writing and describe clearly why the decision is unacceptable to the employee.
The employee’s grievance must be responded to in accordance with the following timelines:
- Department heads must respond to the employee in writing within seven calendar days of receipt of the grievance.
- Deans and senior management staff members must respond to the employee in writing within 14 calendar days of receipt of the grievance.
- The Senior Executive Vice President, Chief Operating Officer or designee or the EVP/CAO or designee will respond to the employee in writing within a reasonable time, not to exceed 30 calendar days, following receipt of the grievance.
A written decision will be sent to the employee within the time limits described above.
Failure to respond to the employee within the time limit allows the grievant to automatically submit the grievance to the next higher appeal level. The decision of the Senior Executive Vice President, Chief Operating Officer or designee or the EVP/CAO or designee is final.
The written grievance and any and all decisions or responses regarding the grievance shall be part of the employee record.
- Human Resources
- Office of the Executive Vice President & Chief Academic Officer