Procedures for advice and support from UCU in issues involving a possible grievance by you or a disciplinary case against you
As a result of increased pressure and to take advantage of expertise which has been built up at local (i.e. School) and central (i.e. Coordinating Committee) levels, the UCU University Coordinating Committee (UCC) operates a clear set of procedures which it asks you to follow if you have a problem in your School with a colleague, with your line manager or with your Dean or Associate Dean, concerning your contract, work allocation, conditions of service or work, i.e. a problem which could lead to either a grievance by you or a disciplinary case being brought against you.
1. Firstly try to resolve the problem informally on a one-to-one basis directly with the person who is causing you the problem; if you have not done that, the grievance may eventually fail.
2. If that fails to resolve the problem, or if the lack of communication with that person is the problem itself, take the issue, still informally, to your appraiser or line manager (unless that is the same person against whom you have the complaint), seeking to settle the issue amicably and productively.
3. If the problem is not unique to you, and is shared by others in your School, Subject Group or Division, then you are advised to try to resolve it collectively, as a collective issue may more easily be settled long-term than an individual problem. It may be that this is the point where, logistically, you are best advised to approach your School UCU Representative, asking him/her to ‘chair’ the informal gathering of affected staff and give advice as appropriate.
4. Throughout this process of informal attempts, build up a record of the process – of the problem and of the attempts to resolve it informally – listing dates of memos, meetings, events, incidents, etc. and keeping whatever evidence may be relevant.
5. If the problem is still unresolved by informal approaches, then go to your School UCU representative. If your School Representative cannot resolve the problem at School level or if they need advice, they will refer the issue to the UCU Co-ordinating Committee which will give advice and assistance as appropriate.
6. If you are called for a disciplinary hearing, you should of course contact your School UCU representative immediately and should make no attempt to resolve the issue informally after that.