AS OF NOVEMBER 4,2008 THE UNION WILL NO LONGER PROVIDE INDIVIDUAL GRIEVANCE REPRESENTATION TO NON-MEMBERS.
Unlike many other unions, UFF has in the past offered grievance representation to all bargaining unit members, whether or not they have chosen to join the union and pay membership dues. To help offset the costs of grievance representation, in the past UFF has required non-members merely to share the costs of taking their grievances to arbitration. However, because our state affiliate has informed UFF that it cannot provide legal support to UFF when it represents non-members, UFF is unable to continue to provide representation to non-members.
Therefore, as of November 4th, unless you are a member of UFF at or before the time of any incident that violates your rights under the BOT-UFF Collective Bargaining Agreement, UFF will not represent youin your grievance. As always, you will have a right to represent yourself or to hire an attorney to represent you. And, just as you cannot obtain an insurance policy after an accident happens, you cannot obtain union representation in a grievance over something that happened before you were a member by joining the union after the incident that violates your contract rights and leads to the grievance occurs.
As has always been the case, non-members are not entitled to the $1 million insurance policy that covers liability for work-related lawsuits or claims against a faculty member. This has always been another important protection offered automatically to UFF members and paid for by their dues.
As before, it is the choice of an individual faculty member or librarian as to whether or not to join UFF. However,because that choice now means the individual is opting out of a right to have the assistance of trained UFF grievance representatives, the union feels it is important for all faculty members and librarians to be notified of our new policy.