Over the years I have noticed how much confusion there is about grievances and the grievance process at NYSEG with our Local 10 members. Many prefer to make up their own rules about how it should work, others are happy to listen to a co-worker and take it as gospel. The process is laid out in our "contract" or "Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA)." Article XVII on page 49.
If you feel you have in some way been wronged by the company, you first need to refer to the C.B.A. to find the corresponding article that was violated. After that is done contact your Union Steward and give them all the information you have about the violation. You have 15 days from the date of the violation for the Union Steward and you to meet with your supervisor to file a grievance or settle it.
If there is no settlement at the first step the grievance should be sent immediately to the Local 10 office to be written up. There are only 10 days to have the grievance written up and sent to the company. Then a committee from the Union and a committee from the company will meet to resolve the grievance. If there is not a resolution to the grievance at second step, the grievance will go before the Executive Board to be passed to Third Step or be withdrawn based on the merit of the grievance. If the grievance is passed, there will then be another meeting of committees from the Union and Company to find a resolution. Should that not happen the grievance once again goes before the Executive Board to be passed to Arbitration or be withdrawn based on the merits of the grievance.
When a grievance is accepted by the Executive Board for arbitration the long process of arbitrating the grievance begins. On average the arbitration process last one year. The ruling is made by an arbitrator and both parties are bound by the decision, whatever it may be. Rulings can be made for the grievant, the company, or totally something else. It's completely up to the arbitrator.
I hope this has given you some helpful insight regarding the grievance process. Feel free to contact the office with any questions as always.