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Union-Administration Relations (Union Release Time) (AFSCME Service)HR-12-50

Scope

This policy applies to all Service Staff employees serving as representatives of AFSCME at Bloomington, IUPUI, and South Bend.

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Policy Statement

  1. It is the intent of this policy to establish and embrace long term and mutually beneficial relations between Indiana University Administration and AFSCME. This policy is supplemental to and not in lieu of the Conditions for Cooperation. In case of conflict between these policies, the Conditions for Cooperation and Articles of Cooperation shall control.
  2. Neither the university nor the union will discriminate against any employee because of permitted employee organizational activities or membership, or the right to refrain from such activities or membership. There will be no discrimination against any employee in the application of the terms of any policy because of membership or non-membership in the union. No employee will be compensated in any way or receive special privileges for refraining from union activity or membership.
  3. This policy is intended to assist with the application of Articles 1 and 2 of the Articles of Cooperation found in this set of policies and will serve as a resource for decision making by AFSCME officers/stewards and departmental management when a union official is participating in:
    1. Union/management meetings during normal work hours
    2. Union/management meetings during non-work hours
    3. Grievance investigation or preparation activities
    4. Corrective action or grievance meetings with management
    5. Union meetings during work hours
    6. Approved union-sponsored training programs
  4. Names of officers and stewards and assigned areas must be furnished to the campus Human Resource office, who in turn shall advise all unit management personnel concerned.

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Procedures

  1. Union Release Time
    1. Union/management meetings during normal work hours
      1. These are meetings with the campus Human Resource office or within an individual department, annual negotiations under the Conditions for Cooperation or to serve on committees when union participation is requested.
      2. Union officers or stewards will be released from their regular work shift without loss of pay to attend such union/management meetings provided the time spent is kept at a minimum. The time paid will be limited to actual meeting time plus necessary time, if any, spent during scheduled working hours, in traveling between the employee’s work location and the meeting location.
    2. Union/management meetings during non-work hours
      1. This is the same type of meeting as outlined in the previous section but the meeting is scheduled during hours outside the regular work shift for a union officer or stewards, as frequently happens for second- and third-shift employees. The person shall either:
        1. Receive the same amount of time to take off during that week
        2. Have that workday adjusted to permit either a late arrival or early departure for the same amount of time
        3. This provision will apply only if the employee is scheduled to work the following workday. For example, if the meeting is during the day on Tuesday and the employee's next scheduled workday is not until Wednesday night, this provision would not apply.
        4. The policy on change in work schedules will not apply in these cases.
    3. Grievance investigation or preparation activities
      1. Employees and stewards shall be allowed reasonable opportunity for discussion of complaints or grievances subject to the approval of the supervisor of each as to the earliest practical time when they both can be spared from the job. Grievance-related meetings and activities will be scheduled at times that are least disruptive to operations and so that they do not interfere with essential work requirements.
        1. If this release time is during the regular work shift of those involved, it will be with pay.
        2. If the time is during the hours outside the regular work shift of a participant, the time is without pay.
        3. For example, a union officer who normally works the first shift will be on his own time when visiting a work location on the second shift to meet with a grievant. Likewise, a grievant who works the second shift, will be on his or her own time during visits to the campus in the daytime to meet with a union officer to discuss a grievance.
    4. Corrective action or grievance meetings with management
      1. Since corrective action or grievance meetings in one of the specified steps of the grievance procedure are scheduled by management, the grievant and union official representing the grievant will be considered in pay status. If the meeting is during the hours outside the regular work shift of either the grievant or the official, they will receive either an equivalent amount of paid time off to be taken that week or will have the starting or ending time for that workday adjusted an equivalent amount of time.
      2. The policy on change in work schedules will not apply in these circumstances.
      3. At Bloomington, see the Problem-Grievance Resolution policy for provisions related to union officers attending Stage 3 grievance meetings and Stage 4 hearings.
    5. Union meetings during work hours
      1. Time spent at union business meetings or conducting other union-related business such as solicitation of membership, dues or other internal organization business shall be conducted during non-work hours. Time away from work will either be without pay or charged against accumulated vacation or sick time at the employee’s choice and subject to departmental policies and practices concerning the scheduling of such time.
        1. If mutually agreed and if scheduling permits without hardship to the unit, adjustments in hours of work can be arranged.
      2. At IUPUI the President, Vice President, or Secretary-Treasurer of Local 1477 will have one hour each day with pay to devote to union activities arising out of the Conditions for Cooperation. Additional time, up to a maximum per day of two hours, must be requested in advance and approved by the supervisor.
      3. At South Bend, the union president will have one hour per day with pay to be available to the represented SM employees in the AFSCME office. If the president is not able or available to be in the union office during the designated time, the vice president will perform this function. The one hour per day of union time should be scheduled by mutual agreement with the appropriate departmental management to minimize interference with work schedules.
      4. At Bloomington and South Bend, the union president or designee may attend with pay a new employee orientation session in UHR, if a session is held, when SM employees are present. The campus Human Resource office will provide quarterly a listing of new employees in the covered unit.
    6. Approved Union-sponsored training programs
      1. If approved in advance by university administration and departmental management, union officers, stewards, and other approved union-represented employees will be allowed time away from work without loss of pay to participate in union-sponsored training programs.
      2. If such programs occur during hours outside the regular work shift of a participant, the time shall be without pay for that participant. If mutually agreed and if scheduling permits without hardship to the unit, adjustments in hours of work can be arranged so that pay is not lost.
      3. At Bloomington attendance at such training programs is limited to one shift off with pay annually, subject to the following provision:
        1. The university will be provided an opportunity to make a presentation during the program.
        2. When steward training is scheduled during hours outside the regular work shift for a union officer, as frequently happens for second and third shift employees, the person shall have the following workday adjusted to permit either a late arrival or early departure for the same amount of time. This provision will apply only if the employee is scheduled to work the following workday. For example, if the meeting is during the day on Tuesday and the employee's next scheduled workday is not until Wednesday night, this provision would not apply.
    7. Approval Process for release time
      1. Prior to leaving the work area for union-related activities described in this appendix, union officers and stewards must:
        1. Obtain supervisory approval to leave the work site
        2. Record time spent on union-related activities in accordance with department instructions clearly identifying it as release time.
  2. Union leave of absence
    1. When appropriately applied for, and subject to department recommendation of restriction because of hardship to the university, leaves of absence (without pay) will be given to members of AFSCME for activities of the union that are in the interest of AFSCME and Indiana University:
      1. Up to a total of three (3) months in any period of five (5) years
      2. Subject to request for and approval of extension, under the same conditions
      3. Not to exceed a total of three (3) months in the same five (5) year period
    2. Staff do not accrue university service credit during discretionary leaves of absence such as a union leave of absence.
    3. At South Bend, the AFSCME Local President or designee will be provided 10 days unpaid leave to attend official union functions.
  3. Bulletin Boards
    1. The union shall be allowed space on designated bulletin boards of the university for the purpose of posting notices pertaining to official union business such as notice of union meetings, election of officers, etc. Anything pertaining to matters other than official union business must first be submitted to and approved by the campus Human Resource office before it is posted.
  4. Campus mail
    1. The union may utilize Campus Mail to distribute information to represented employees and appropriate administrative staff to the limitations set forth below and in all applicable federal laws and postal regulations. The Union may only use Campus Mail for the following:
      1. Notice of Union meetings for campus employees;
      2. Union nominations and elections of officers to represent campus employees;
      3. Appointment of campus Union officers;
      4. Documents related to the representation of an employee at any step of the Grievance Procedures; and
      5. Notices of meetings and minutes of any joint union-administration committees
      6. Mutually agreed upon policies and summaries of such policies
      7. Any other information approved by the campus Director of Human Resources.

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Sanctions

Managers, supervisors, and employees who violate this policy are subject to corrective action, up to and including separation.

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History

In the Spring of 2012, Indiana University administration and  AFSCME Council 62 leadership worked to merge the personnel policies covering Service (SM) Staff at Bloomington, IUPUI, and South Bend into one set of policies. This is one of the 27 policies that is the product of their work. Effective July 1, 2012, it brought together the provisions that were the same on all three campuses; eliminated differences when agreement could be reached; and identified those provisions in which differences remained.

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